I have been sick for about the past three days and I wont lie, I’m miserable. Apparently it’s some weird African sickness that the locals call Ebola whatever that means in English. Just kidding. I really just have a bad cold but still it’s very unpleasant. Since in my family we don’t believe in cold medicine (or any medicine for that matter), I did not bring any to alleviate my symptoms (although i do have an arsenal of diarrhea meds which my doctor recommended…what do I pay him for?) which are a slight fever, sneezing, and a runny nose that flows faster than the Nile River (hopefully you aren’t eating while reading this). In light of this fact, the other day people offered to bring me medicine which they had brought with them to Africa. I gladly accepted, so this morning one girl showed me the medicine she had available. I was looking through the options when one caught my eye. It said roughly “Cold Medicine” and underneath the words “Severe.” I thought to myself, “Yep, that’s me.” I eagerly snatched it up. I feel much better now (oooooooohhhhhhhhh creepy Six Sense reference). Now I am sitting in the IMME quarters on my computer listening to Taking Back Sunday and others which by the way reminds me that my punk sister Lauren still hasn’t emailed me about her Blink-182 reunion concert experience!!, and I don’t mean punk as in torturted-emo-antigovernmental-musician. Well gots to go.
Sunday, September 20, 2009
Yesterday I arrived back in Mukono after visiting the town of Jinja, which is the source of the Nile. It was a really fun trip and we got to do a lot of things in a very short time. First off we arrived in Jinja around 6pm at this really amazing resort, complete with African style huts and a really sweet pool. A few hours before dinner we got the chance to talk to a group of missionaries involved in a prison ministry here in Uganda. It was a very interesting discussion. Without a doubt the best part of the day was the meal. I have been eating matoke, rice, and beans at my home stay this whole time so it was nice to have a change. We of course did have a choice of rice and matoke, but there was also chips (french fries) and these pork shish kabobs that were amazing. After the meal all of us played in the pool or around it (I was squirting people with a water gun).
The next day was even better. We woke up to the best breakfast that I have ever had in Africa. We had omelets, cereal, pineapples, and even orange juice. It was heaven. Then we took off to a discussion with another missionary named Ben who was doing some pretty interesting stuff in Jinja. Not only did the group he was with evangelize, but also they set up this Cafe that included a restaurant, gift shop, and an internet cafe (the food was good). Plus I got to hear about the negative side of African culture which I haven’t really heard about. He then took us on this devotional tour of Jinja. Our first stop was the source of the Nile. Ben talked about how amazing it is that this river has been the source of life for so many people. If you think about it, it is pretty cool. I mean this river helped create the greatest civilization on Earth, ancient Egypt. He then showed us this area of town that use to be really ritzy but was now run down. Apparently Jinja use to be the Beverly Hills of Uganda until all the Indian business owners were forced to leave by a former President.
Next, we walked through this industrial zone called the “Ting Ting.” They called it that because there was a bunch of workers hammering things and welding and the sound was almost unbearable. It was awesome to see yet challenging because the people working there barely make any money. Finally, we concluded our tour at Jinja Hospital. We were allowed to look around the wards to see the state of medical care in Uganda. The place reminded me of a WWII hospital. There were just corridors lined with hospital beds on either side. Patients were lying there mostly unattended. Nurses in Uganda aren’t responsible for patient basic care. It’s up to the family. It was a sad thing to see. Although some of the tour was tense, it was really great. When we got back to the resort we got to take a boat ride on the Nile.
When the boat ride was over, we spent the rest of the time up to dinner playing frisbee in the pool. Fun Fun. Now to the most memorable part of the trip, dinner. I had the best cheese burger ever!!!!! It was the best. That will probably be the last burger I have for a long time.
The Last day we attended this church. We got to see and hear really cool worship music, and watch a group of children dance like pop stars. We also sang some songs for the Church and attended a Bible study. Then it was back to Campus.
Here are a few pics from the trip:
Thursday, September 17, 2009
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
A new rule has been instated on this here blog. The rule is simple, if you read my blog I would appreciate a comment from you. You may read my blog everyday very faithfully, but I would appreciate knowing that you have. Here in Africa if you sneak into someone’s house with your shoes on they will know that someone has been there. Why? because the red dirt here sticks to everything and gets everywhere. In short, don’t sneak into my house without at least letting me know you’ve been there. (Thank You Lauren for your Comments :) )
Monday, September 14, 2009
This Sunday has to have been the slowest day on the planet. I pretty much just chilled and slept for most of the day. I guess that makes up for the fact that on Saturday I had to move loads of firewood down from this hill which took forever, but hey at least I got some exercise. Anyway, while trying to find something to do I was messing with my computer and I stumbled across all these webcam pictures that I had no idea were on my computer (probably because they were taken without my knowledge). Most of them are of my sister:
Thursday, September 10, 2009
(The Following is an actual journal entry)
Oh my gosh the planets have alligned!! It’s the ninth day of the ninth month in 2009! Wow. Anyway well today I had my very first successful bartering experience in Africa or anywhere for that matter. It happened like this, so today I was determined to purchase a traditional African shirt in this bazaar that they had set up on campus, so I looked around at all the various shops and nothing was striking my fancy. That is until I saw THE SHIRT. It was a black shirt with gold trim and it was awesome. Well this guy saw me looking at it and he comes up to me and tells me to try it on (He owns the place). I do and I really like it. I ask “how much” and its 20,000 shillings (2000 shillings is $1.00, you do the math). Well in Africa, you can always go lower and I knew that the typical shirt went for 15,000. I tell this guy that I’m only willing to pay 15000 and the lowest he will go is 20,000 so I left. Well I went to another shop and got a shirt that I liked for 15000. During the day I went back a few times with Holly. Each time I went, the shirt I passed by kept catching my eye. It was so cool. Holly is with me and she goes over to the shop with the shirt to look for a small rug. Well the lady who also runs the shop recognized me from before and urged me to try it on so my friend could see (my friend being Holly). I said I would love too but it was too much. She repeated her offer of 20,000 but I said no. As we are walking to get a drink, I realize that I really want that shirt, so I went back expecting to pay 20,000 but I got her down to 18,000, which according to my African friend is pretty good. Well off to bed.
Monday, September 7, 2009
Well everyone I’m sure you have been clamoring back in the U.S, demanding and shouting for news of my journey. I left for Africa on Monday the 24th of August and I arrived on Tuesday the 25th in Entebbe Africa.
It was without a doubt the longest flight I have ever experienced,
but it was very very fun and the Dutch really know how to feed you on their planes. Anyway, so after arriving in Africa I stayed my first night on campus before being taken to meet my host family the next day. They are a really amazing family if I may say. It is a family of six and now eight including me and another student. After two days with them our group set out to Rwanda, a neighboring country, for a week and I just got back last night. My time in Rwanda has been very fun, interesting, and at times really depressing. Most of the time we were learning about the genocide that took place there which is why it was depressing, but the things I was exposed to I will never forget. It was really eye opening to learn of the awful violence that took place in Rwanda, to hear about the efforts to rebuild, and to see the country in person. The places we went included a church where thousands of people were massacred and a genocide memorial museum. We also got to talk to numerous people about their experiences.
On a happier note, my group and I attended this African church service which was really cool. There was a lot of singing and dancing we even got to play a song for them. Also, it was really fun to hang out and get to know the other people on the program. All the depression was worth it though because on the way back we all got to stay on this island in the middle of this lake.
It was super fun as you can see. Well no one wants to read a novel so I will stop here but here are a few pictures of Africa: