You are currently browsing the monthly archive for May 2009.

One could probably make a living documenting the amazing signage throughout Uganda.  Let me share with you a few of my favorites.

Translation: fresh, barbecue, and pan fried.

Translation: fresh, barbecue, and pan fried.

words of wisdom from a big semi-truck.

words of wisdom from a big semi-truck.

in addition to the many NGOs in Gulu, you can also find the Best Friends Association. :)

in addition to the many NGOs in Gulu, you can also find the Best Friends Association. 🙂

the only ad for a boda boda stage I've ever seen.

the only ad for a boda boda stage I've ever seen.

I love that the crosswalk man is wearing a fancy hat.

I love that the crosswalk man is wearing a fancy hat.

this pork restaurant is called "alulululu". awesome.

this pork restaurant is called "alulululu". awesome.

not sure what this once was - inn? restaurant? top society? casino? ... life line?

not sure what this once was - inn? restaurant? top society? casino? ... life line?

Our journey home didn’t quite go according to plan. Soon after arriving at Entebbe Airport on Monday morning for my 9:00am departure we were informed that the pilot had fallen sick and the flight was delayed “until further notice”. After an hour or so, they announced that a new pilot was coming and we would depart at midnight…15 hours later. During our wait, however, the airline put us up in the nicest hotel I’ve ever stayed in in Uganda, the Imperial Beach Resort….beach on Lake Victoria, pool, air conditioned rooms with cable…

This actually worked out pretty good for Lauren and I. She was scheduled to fly out at 10:00pm that night, so my delay gave us the chance to spend the day together…in a fancy hotel, instead of the cheap place up the street she was planning to hang out in.

At about 4:00pm that afternoon Lauren discovered via email that her flight plan had been changed. She would now be departing at 7:50pm on a flight to Nairobi where she would get a flight to Amsterdam. Apparently KLM decided to cancel all the Monday night flights from Entebbe to Amsterdam during the month of May without informing passengers. So, Lauren quickly arranged herself and made it to the airport, just in time. If she hadn’t been on line at that moment to check things out, she would have surely missed her flight.

After my 8 hour layover in London, I set off for Chicago on the weirdest flight I’ve ever been on. About an hour after we took off, a young white American male (probably about 30) decided to attack a flight attendant after he refused to serve him more alcohol. He was restrained and seemed to relax. But after a few minutes he decided to attack again…making threats and literally falling over into other passengers’ seats. Not wanting to take chances, the pilot decided to make an emergency landing in Glasgow, Scotland where the man was taken off the plane by local police. For about 2 hours we sat in Glasgow as the police took statements from passengers and crew about what happened and searched for the man’s luggage. We then flew back to London where the plane picked up more fuel, more food, and a new crew. Finally, after 18 hours on the plane, I arrived in Chicago at around 3:00am.

Luckily, my beautiful mother waited through the 10 hour delay and greeted me with a smile once I passed through customs.

Home.

Fortune blessed us with two wonderful events during our final week in Kampala.

On Thursday we visited Mulago hospital (the main referral hospital in the country) to see the newborn son of my former colleague at the Refugee Law Project, Lyandro Komakech. Lyandro became a good friend during my ten months at the RLP and it was an honor to see him, his beautiful wife, his mother-in-law, and newborn on such a special occasion.

dsc_0057

On Friday we attended the wedding of the brother of another former RLP co-worker, Moses Kabugere. Moses and I got to know each other during field visits to schools around Kampala for refugee education research that I helped out with. The wedding was an extravagant affair at one of Kampala’s nicest hotels. Lauren and I had a blast chatting with Moses’s friends and relatives seated at our table, and listening to the many speeches and live music.

As we prepare to leave Uganda this week and transition back into American life, I am happy that my last memories are of friends experiencing the simple joys universal in human life—birth, marriage, and the gathering together of loved ones.

dsc_0071

Munaku trading center.  Our building is the orange one on the left.

Munaku trading center. Our building is the orange one on the left.

After a month of saying goodbyes to friends who live all over Uganda, it was finally time to say goodbye to our apartment and neighborhood yesterday. Munaku has been our home since August and we have really come to love the little neighborhood where everybody knows our names.

We’d been busy packing, giving away and selling our furniture, and cleaning up the place for the last four days. It was exhausting work. A little before and after action:

before...

before...

...and after.

...and after

Finally, we finished and took a final walk around the neighborhood. We climbed the huge hill nearby that has a great view of the city, went to the local supermarket one last time, and said goodbye to our boda boda driver friends.

While walking away from the trading center for the last time, waving to the guys that always shout my Luganda name for the last time, I think it is no surprise to any of us that I started crying. During the 9 months that we lived in Munaku, I really fell in love with the place. Now I can just look forward to the next visit… I hope it is sooner rather than later.

welcome…

Welcome to our blog! Follow along with us as we travel and experience life as a couple of 20-somethings - with all its ups and downs. We hope to post photos, short videos, stories about our daily life and not-so-daily adventures, and thoughts on what’s going on in the world.

Recently Popular Posts

Flickr Photos

More Photos

Categories