Blogs from Central Region, Uganda, Africa - page 52

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Africa » Uganda » Central Region » Kampala September 8th 2006

Well nothing went as expected this week: the dining room floor is being finished as I write this and the water filter showed up and is working properly (I have drank 2 litres thus far and nothing bad has happened). Needless to say, I am a little worried right now because nothing has gone wrong in so long and things are actually being completed in a reasonable amount of time. It's just not Africa. With all the work though and Julie having gone to Masaka to teach kids there Capoeira, my week has been rather hectic. After teaching Monday, or was it tuesday? from 9-12, I then proceeded to help in moving sand and rock and mixing the materials for the first layer of the floor, all whilst mixing sweety water, handing out toothpaste and dealing ... read more
Photographer
Outside
Materials

Africa » Uganda » Central Region » Kampala August 30th 2006

As a prelude to the week, I should note that perhaps one of the greatest obstacles to getting anything done in Uganda is the lack of organization. I have heard that most management positions, or a lot, are filled by kenyans (not sure how reliable the info is), and that Uganda is considering allowing Kenyans longer working visas to confront the problem. A lack of organization was one of the main reasons why the platform took a week to build; instead of bringing all the supplies and having assigned tasks, supplies would come on an ad hoc basis and it seemed that no one knew what was suppose to be done. Anyway, just a little rant, and I should say that it is not THAT bad, but it does frustrate me quite a bit.... The week ... read more
The Test
Uncle
Making Bricks

Africa » Uganda » Central Region » Kampala August 20th 2006

+ you stop reaching for the light switch + you take a book to read when uploading photos to your blog + you appreciate a tarmac road as though it's silk + you ask children to go and cut down banana leaves without worrying they'll lose a finger in the process + you organise your mossie net and bed BEFORE it gets dark + you can put your hand straight on your headtorch + you instinctively check the latrine for lizards, cockroaches etc. Far better to find them before you squat! + you use every last bit of water in the bottle + you feel guilty for using a whole bucket of water to shower, knowing the effort it took to collect and heat the water + little Joseph opposite has nearly mastered the clapping pattern ... read more
Resting in the trees!
Bats in the staffroom!

Africa » Uganda » Central Region » Kampala August 19th 2006

Phew! It's taken 35 mins to log on and upload those two pictures, so the full 360degree view will have to wait until I get home! I was really pleased with the transformation though and wanted to share it with you all. The teachers are delighted too, and I've bought them enough paint to do the remaining classrooms ( now they know it is possible for even a woman to paint!). We've now finished our school placements and I left with a mixture of emotions. It was sad to say goodbye to the people in the village, the teachers and especially the children. I do feel ready to move on though - and ready for a break, May half term seems so long ago! ... read more
...after!
Sewing a sugar sack calendar
Numeracy mobile

Africa » Uganda » Central Region » Kampala August 19th 2006

Well it's been another two weeks in the village and not a whole lot has changed. Since the kids are out of school I mostly pass my time playing football with the boys, going to the well (it has not rained in some time), napping, working out using the jerrycans of sweety water, and finally, helping out with some of the construction that needs to be done. There is a lot that needs to be built and I would like to leave something solid and useful behind before I leave. Our first project is building a platform for one of the water containers using bricks and concrete. With any luck it should be done sometime before 2007. While I have noticed travelling through Africa and other parts of the world how much workers rest and how ... read more
Fr om the office
Lunch and Dinner
The project

Africa » Uganda » Central Region » Kampala August 17th 2006

The final day at school brought very strange feelings. Usually I'd be frantically labelling drawer units, sorting schemes of work etc. However, the work was done and the preparations were for the farewell ceremony that took place in the afternoon. The children were busily composing their own songs, with only a little help from a teacher, and running round with leg rattles attached practising their dancing. The staff were to be found rolling out chappatis on a stool, using a bottle of Nile beer as the rolling bin. Children were bring extra firewood to make a hot fire on which they were fried. The proceedings were due to start at 2pm so typically got underway at about 3.30pm. The ceremony followed the now familiar pattern of prayer, introductions, reading of agenda and then speeches by the ... read more

Africa » Uganda » Central Region » Kampala August 17th 2006

It's my second-to-last night here in the Blue Mango, so I'm starting to get reflective on my trip so far. I've been so many places, met so many incredible people, and seen some pretty amazing things on my journey. At times I have been hopeless, lonely, and angry. Others, I've been contented, amazed, and humbled. Overall, the past two months have been an incredible experience that I would not trade for the world. I have learned that reaching out to others always pays off. I've learned to be critical of even the most put-together, well-meaning organizations. I've learned to be patient with myself, and how to be patient with others when it seems there is nothing in common between you. I've learned loads about all sorts of cultures - Masai, Chagga, Buganda, even Irish. I've learned ... read more
New friends
brand new basket

Africa » Uganda » Central Region » Kampala August 12th 2006

I really thought I'd seen the most bizarre things on the back of bikes until last weekend. I'd seen: several people, live chickens, live goats, a pile of firewood higher than the rider, four crates of sodas, charcoal, bananas etc... But last weekend took the biscuit! I was heading back on my boda-boda, so unfortunately couldn't get a photo, when I saw a carpenter loading a solid wooden single bed frame on to the back of a push bike, obviously going to deliver it! I've started using my video camera a bit this week, though feel very self conscious to have something that costs so much. The children at school just love looking at the screen and so it's quite hard to film as I have a swarm of children as soon as they see it ... read more

Africa » Uganda » Central Region » Kampala August 12th 2006

Looking back at some of the blogs, I realised that I haven't said much about school for a while. As this is the main reason for coming here I thought I'd better address that! This week has been a bit mixed. The children have been doing end of term exams in the core subjects (Maths, English, Science and Social Studies). My school is two teachers down this week for various bizarre, typically African, reasons, so my role has been that of supply teacher for part of the time. This has involved invigilating exams. I have never been so frustrated with assessment! The tests are impossibly hard, some of the questions don't make sense or contain inaccuracies, the children have to sit there for over two hours - even though they've done all they can within about ... read more
Looking so smart!

Africa » Uganda » Central Region » Kampala August 12th 2006

Thanks again to all who have sent in messages - it really is lovely to come and read them. Lynne - hope you and the family have a great time in Corsica. M+D - glad to hear you had a great time in Edinburgh. Whilst we were staying at the hotel last weekend there was an item from the festival on Sky News which was bizarre to watch from the middle of Uganda! Couldn't see you though! Well done England at H. Enjoy your walks with Poppy. V+C - thanks for your updates - hope the weather has cooled slightly. I heard about the whole situation with the arrests in Bucks. Yesterday the blog site was down so I read The Times instead! Emma - enjoy your last week on Casualty - where will I get ... read more




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