The coverage here is 2G when it works so,…
I’d like to try and explain my day today but I’m not sure where to start.
I slept good. Woke up a few too many times but it was all good.
At 7 the local helpers arrive and start making noise, nice noise. They don’t have a quiet voice. The first thing they do is boil giant cauldrons of water over logs and once they do they go pour that in to a big tank over the showers and they have that ready at 730 sharp every day. To put in to to perspective it’s like the size of tank that looks like the Gatorade tub they throw on the coaches after a game. If it runs out of hot water they refill it until everyone showers. I was in the navy so I know how to take a military shower. All good.
Breakfast was great, a Denver omelette. They called it that 🙂 peppers, onions and tomatoes. Coffee locally grown, roasted by hand over fires and ground daily. It’s a cash crop now due to this organization.
After breakfast I met with Nick the big picture manager for Uganda projects. He explained the goals. It was good. He introduced me to the project leaders. All local guys full of energy and knowledge. Henry was assigned to me for my first day and it starts with an all day cultural scavenger hunt. We walked to the closest village Rubugeri about 45 minute walk. I met 25 people or more through it all and 30 more after. So great. They ran through their enterprise goals, conservation goals, health education and agriculture goals. Information overload. Amazing stuff.
They are vowing to help me do something really fun for all of you and promised to not let us down. It’s going to be hard to not talk about it but we have it all planned out. I suggested it about a month ago and they are making it happen!
Southwest Uganda is a gem of a wild place. The people are gentle and sweet and helping. The mountains are massive and the valleys are lush. Even though the equator runs through this village I’m in called Nombe it’s not warm because our elevation is so high. It’s kind of hard to breathe here at first – it’s a lot higher than Denver the mile high city.
The end of the day was a “welcome gathering” for me. It’s hard to explain the setting but it’s a kind of small hall with bar stools and Rolex’s (not a watch it’s food like a thin pastry burrito with some veggies in it) warm beer, and sealed plastic pouches of gin and the mixers were all warm like bitters or ginger. There is no refrigerators in this place so everything is just room temperature. They played loud music that was great and even played some songs I knew.
The night ended and Annalise and I ( another volunteer) shared a boda back with a fearless driver to the volunteer house. That’s a 100cc motorcycle with three of us in the dark on a road that was barely a path and then it started pouring rain. I couldn’t have been more alive. Annalise was screaming with laughter and it was like nothing I’ve done since I was a kid. A 20 minute rain drenched perfect end to a great day.
Tomorrow I learn more about the rules of the road.
Fun fact – there are mountain elephants here and because they were poached for a century they attack people. Good for them really,.. When we go in to the forecast we have to take a look out and someone with a rifle in case we need to scare them off. They run from sound – they’ve never had to shoot one just shoot in the air.
More to come.
Respect, professionalism and perseverance. Life is a gift. Living is a choice.