Part of our requirements for this trip was to take a one-credit course on East African culture. This course was supposed to take place at Saint Mary's over the course of a week, but due to unforeseen circumstances, Professor Miguda met us here in Uganda and we are using the conference room at the Central Inn as a makeshift classroom. This class may be one of the most interesting classes I have ever taken. I am learning so much!
Did you know...
African culture stems partly from Islamic and European influences in addition to the traditional African influences.
Most African children grow up learning three languages: their mother tongue, which they speak at home; the country's official language, which is spoken in public; and English which is taught in school.
Technically the official language is Uganda is English although many citizens speak Swahili. In Kyarusozi the mother tongue is rhotorro and we will be helping teach English in the school.
We were also able to take a bus trip around Entebbe which was an amazing experience! It is so beautiful here! Everything is so lush and green. For part of the tour we went to these Botanical Gardens which were absolutely magnificent. We saw flamingos and monkeys there. We got up close and personal with the monkeys until Nora said she wanted to pick one up and it started pouncing at us. We decided that might be a good time to head back to the car. On our trip we also saw long-horned bulls and goats. The cows and goats were just chillin' on the side of the road. It was very interesting. Entebbe is a lot bigger than I realized and very spread out. It was interesting to see how the five star hotels and mansions sitting on Lake Victoria were located next to very poor areas. When we drove down into one of the poorer areas many of the children came running over to our van. We smiled and waved and took pictures. They seemed happy to see us and were laughing and smiling for us, even though I'm sure they had no clue what we were saying to them. Seeing the children is making me so excited to be at the school! I can't wait!
We tried African tea today! It tastes similar to Chai Tea and is made by cooking the tea leaves with the milk in a pot. We also had regular tea bags of tea. It was delicious!
Professor Miguda was also telling us about the Tsetse Fly which will make you sleepy, but since the /T/ is silent Nora and Joy mistakenly thought she was saying the sexy fly. We all got a few giggles out of that one.
I have now mastered the art of brushing my teeth with bottled water. We aren't sure if that is necessary, but since the water smells funky and sometimes comes out yellow we decided better safe than sorry.
The mosquito net is a whole other story. eEvery time I try to lay down I have this twenty minute feud of trying to tuck the mosquito net around my mattress while it decides to get all tangled up on top of my head. Good thing I'll have six weeks of practice!
... In other good news both my bags and one of Jen's came in. After a very painful telephone call with the man at the airport, where the only words I understood were hello ( which he said at least 20 times) Madam Copi, luggage,and here, we were able to swing by the airport ot pick it up. We also exchanged some of our money into Ugandan Shillings.
We leave at nine in the morning for Kyarusozi. I can't wait!