Sunday, September 25, 2011

The business meeting...

So many things to share and yet I'd have to write a novel to share it all. I had an entire entry written up last week to share here, but so much has happened since then. So just to catch everyone up on my life here (those of you not on facebook...that's you Willow Valley folks!!) Julia had to fly home last Tuesday morning for surgery. She has been having horrible cramps/pains and finally got the diagnosis that she had to have her gall bladder removed. So now it's just me. I am sure that there are going to be moments when it takes all that I have not to go to the internet cafe to look up plane tickets to come home, but for now I am fine.
So tuesday through Fridaay I lived the village life with my friend James. His aunt died from cancer (please pray for the 2 young children that she left behind.) and James' sister and her husband traveled to the burial. So James and I stayed at their place to care for their children. It was a great few days and it definitely kept me busy. One day while 2 of the kids were at school James and I watched Crash followed by Drop Dead Gorgeous. His choices. Could the day have gotten any better?!
On Saturday morning I ran around Ntinda town in the pouring down rain trying to find an atm that would spit some money out at me. Good times... That afternoon I had thoughts about what am I really doing here. Sometimes I feel like I am just here living my life, hanging out. That was not MY plan. That morning I was supposed to go tot the slums of Kisenyi and do a children's program, but it was canceled due to the rain. It seems that everything I get excited about with kids something happens that I can't go. Anyways, James asked me if I wanted to go to a business meeting with him that evening. Originally when he asked I left it up in the air if I was going. But when the time came to go the power at home was out and I would have been home alone. (nothing like going to bed at 7 when it gets dark!). So I opted to go the business meeting. It started out as a typical evening (for Uganda) waiting an hour for the business man to arrive (we were an hour late ourselves). James' uncle introduced James to this business guy. The business man's wife stays in Kabale, where James' family stays.  Then he wasn't satisfied with the place we chose so we boarded a taxi and went 5 minutes down the street (apparently the 'rich' here can't walk!) We went to some nice hotel, ordered dinner, but then the man got pissed cause the prices in the menu changed (typical in Uganda) and they did not have fish and chips on the menu. they were both sold ala carte but of course he wanted on one plate and he should not have to pay for two ala carte things cause the price includes 2 plates to clean, more service, etc. Hilarious!! So we left there too. We found some random young adult guy on the road just chatting with his friends and the business guy asked him where a place to eat was. This young man showed us the way and then was invited to join us. So we all began chatting. The business man shared that he pays many kids school fees and offered this young guy the opportunity to go back and finish school.  The business man paid and then told us that we were all going back to his house. When we arrived we all sat in the living room watching music videos on tv (i wish you could all experience this...Uganda music videos). The man called James out to another room leaving me and the young adult guy in the room. The business man was apparently making beds cause we were all now spending the night. I thought this was weird, but I am in Uganda. Well James came out with a look on his face of fear and told me to pretend I was on the phone and to tell the business man that I had to go that a friend had an emergency. The tone in his voice was one of those where you don't ask questions and just obey. Thoughts were running through my mind...what happened back there?! I assumed this guy wanted to sleep with me and offered James money to do so. I was freaked out!! So both the guys escorted James and I out. It took a long time to get bodas and probably felt longer cause I had no idea what was going on. When we got on the boda james was talking to the driver. He was getting all emotional. I had no idea what he was saying. Finally he told me. The 'business' man was gay. He apparently was trying to get all over James and kissed him.
James was so upset, obviously. He couldn't stop thanking me for coming along and saving him. I have not stopped praying for the young man. I wonder if the business man pays school fees in exchange for sex. James has been talking to everyone to find a way to stop this guy. Please pray that we are able to stop him in a manner that is safe for us and everyone involved. Once again, not MY program and not a normal story. But it happened here in Uganda.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Greetings from Uganda!!! Just wanted to say hello to everyone since it's been some time. Our internet stick is no longer working and so we are back to internet cafes. I have nothing prepared to write here today and only a short time left so this will be nothing special. Things have been going really well here. We've been super busy this week. Last weekend we were at FDLM in Jinja. (Have I told you lately how awesome those kids are!!) Every minute there was amazing and I was not ready to leave. We traveled home on Monday and spent the evening at home relaxing. On Tuesday I spent the day in Kisenyi with friends and all the cute kids. Of course I got some of the world's best orange juice and the best matoke, rice and gnut sauce in town. Delicious! Yesterday I spent the day at Bula.. The primary kids were able to go to school yesterday (1.5 weeks late-they are able to begin school without paying their fees). The secondary kids are still waiting for their school fees. Pray that the school fees will come in soon. They have been really down and out and can not wait to get back to school. I will definitely miss them when they are gone. There were a lot of good, deep chats yesterday as it was just them and I at the home for most of the afternoon. When the primary kids got home from school we began making chapati and rolex for dinner. This process took till about 11:30pm. It was a late dinner and an even later boda ride home. 

Saturday, September 3, 2011

From Boring to Exciting

Yesterday started out as any other boring Saturday does.  At breakfast Julia was asking if I would go to Game (a walmart-ish store) with her as she has never been and wanted out of the house. I told her that I wanted to clean the room and get packed for Jinja first and then we would see what time it was. (Breakfast here is typically at 11-noon).  I went back to the room and started packing some clothes. I realized that there must have been more dirty clothes than I realized. So I grabbed a few dirty shirts and washed them in the bathroom. Since I was in the groove I washed some more and then some more. I took them outside to hang up on the line and after putting a few shirts up I realized it was breezier than I thought. So I called to Julia to pass me the clothespins that I had brought. (I had yet to use these so I was VERY excited about this). Now the wash lines are over the compost pile and there is high weeds all around. So it took me some time to maneuver around. Well about halfway through I felt something under me give way and before I knew it my feet were wet and then my calves.  I didn’t even think about what I had just fallen into- all that I knew is my flip flop was coming off and I wanted it and my legs to come out of the hole. Upon climbing out I immediately smelt the odor- sewer!! I began walking towards the house wondering how I was going to get by the two girls who were visiting and back to the bedroom to wash off and give Julia a good laugh. Then I realized that my right arm was kind of numb and I did not like bending it. I looked at my elbow and it looked different. I called out to Julia and then the pain started.  I quickly got into the tub and she splashed me with bottled water to get the nastiness off of me and then she helped me change my pants.  We called Ronnie to come with the car and within minutes we were off to the hospital.
                Every bump I felt this pain that was almost unbearable. Along the way Julia reaffirmed me that she had brought food  cause she didn’t know how long we would be at the hospital. I asked what she had and she states, “Swedish fish and biscuits (cookies)”. LOL! Upon arrival to the hospital Julia helped me fill out some basic paperwork and then I was taken to a bed where I was given “painkillers”. They had no water so good thing Julia had some in her bag. Julia was all concerned that I needed to eat something so that the painkiller on an empty stomach would not make me sick. I reassured her that I was still full from breakfast.
                Within minutes I was sent to get xrays. I waited for little time when my doctor came and gave me some paperwork and the bill and said I had to go pay for the xrays before I had them done.  We explained to the men at the desk that I had insurance and they said I had to pay in cash and then my insurance company would reimburse me. Good thing I went to the back just a day or two before! I got the xrays and then back to my bed with the results I was sent. The nurse came and rubbed bengay on my arm and put me in a splint (think guaze). I was informed that it was a sprain and to keep something cold on it to reduce the swelling –(This is Uganda-I don ‘t think ice packs exist!) I have to return Tuesday morning to see a specialist. We were handed the bill and sent to the pharmacy to pick up some meds. Upon reading the bill it was determined that the “painkillers” given to me upon arrival was ibuprofen. LOL!
                We left jumped on some bodas and were off to a really good Ethiopian restaurant that we found a month before (Thanks Melissa for the suggestion). We had goat and then we ordered a cheap garden salad ($1.25) just cause I have had a salad craving since I got to this country. It was huge and amazing!! It had rained during our meal and so we waited to get some bodas home. We fought for a fair price, but never got it. Good thing- cause it started raining again. We stood around and then went into a cheap supermarket to look for a cheap plastic bag to put the xrays in so they would not get wet. Inside we found so many deals. Pasta cheaper than we get at our local supermarket, alfredo sauce (about to expire) cheap, peanut butter and then we found the dvds and there was LOST!! We purchased season 1 for a mere $1.50 and if it works well. Season 6 and Part 1 and 2 of the final season are awaiting my return.
                As I type this my elbow feels so much better. I don’t really know what pain meds they have me on. But I can feel my fingers again and the swelling in my hand has gone down. Now the elbow feels severely black and blue and it is swollen still. But the fact that I can bend it and move it around it is progress enough.
I love my life!!