Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Uganda 101

There is a storm blowing in over the hills of Kampala tonight. I just finished making "taco" meat and chipatis for the house. [chipatis are fried flat pieces of dough that are the size of a tortilla] I walked the 10 minutes to the market on the crowded dusty street with Collin (a ugandan) and he haggled with the ladies at the stand. Going to the market is when I become acutely aware of the color of my skin and hair. It is a rare occurance to see another muzungu. All of the taxi drivers and boda boda men think that you MUST need a ride :o) either that or they are asking you to marry the (which frankly tops my proposal record in the states!) Then we walk back and little claire and maria run up to us to get a hug before I dissappear behind the gate. I hand poured, mixed (on our "clean" kitchen counter), and rolled about 20 chipati's and Hannah fried. It is Collin's mission to teach me how to cook Africa food (which I am not super fond of) Now as I sit here at the office computer looking at the gecko on the wall trying to blend in I will tell you what I have learned about the culture so far here in Uganda. Then I will tell you about the outreaches we have done so far!

  • pedestrians do not have the right of way, if you are hit by a moving vehical they will drive awayquickly because if the public sees it then they will mob the vehicle and take the person out and kill them. crazyness.
  • there are about 4 paved roads in kampala.
  • it is possible to fit 17 people in a 12-14 passanger van.
  • chickens roam everywhere, just like squirrels!
  • you can see a cow tied to anything... a stump, rock, tree, pipe, etc
  • they put a rope around babies waist to give them a good waistline
  • they pierce babys ears so they cannot be used as child sacrifices
  • PDA is very looked down upon
  • if you are wearing something that is more than 3-4 inches above your knee you are considered a prostitute
  • babies have a low level of importance
  • Ugandans get their view of americans solely through media. Thus, they have thought that white people can fly(superman can right?), when we are shot it can't kill us [white people always live in movies], native americans are a myth and no longer exist, if you do not have the body of a supermodel you are either fat or pregnant, eskimos are not real and if they are only live in Greenland, and they do not have a clue what I mean when I say "ya'll".
So, what I have learned in a nutshell. Outreaches...

Nsambia Babies Home: Monday went here in the am and walked into a class of about 15 toddlers who all screamed either "muzungu" or "mommy" all at once! Break your heart right? We just played with them and loved on them for a few hours. Only issuse, no diapers, so we changed about 25 pairs of pants! When the 3 little babies got up we each took one of them and held them while we played with the others. I got to hold Morris who has been there for a few months and was very content to sit in my lap!

Victory Primary School: Imagine...walking down a dirt path through the slums to a clearing where there are 4 clapboard and tin roof buildings that house about 100 students. We help teach, make and serve porridge, lead worship, and do a lesson. Our group acted out Daniel and the Lions. They loved it. The best was when the small kids started basically booty dancing to the djembe drum! Priceless. I will try to get a video next week. At one point I swear I had like 15 kids touching me!

Scripture Union: a small 40 min time of priase and worship, prayer, a message, and discussion. These are older kids and I got talk with Barbara who's favorite subject is chemistry and wants to be a doctor! I led prayer at this meeting.

Whew! That is a lot! The house has been without water for over 2 days now which means bucket showers and squatty pottys. [which are swarming with cockroaches and basically disgusting] PLEASE pray for water SOON!!! I miss everyone and I am getting into the swing of things now. The Lord is teaching me that I really cannot get through a day without Him or His grace. I was encouraged today by Matthew when He says... "do not fear, for I am with you" and with me He is. Pray for safety and wisdom and that the Lord would continually fill me with His joy! Because really, all we need is Him.

oh, and as americans we are most spoiled by dishwashers and washing machines. i washed [and i use that term wash loosely] dishes last night for like an hour. Ok, time to go have girls movie night with Courtney and Hannah! The Holiday will be showing in 10 minutes in Uganda!!

Seek Him. Seek His face. ask for His spirit and joy to fill you.

1 comment:

  1. Meredith--
    I am reading your blog and the clock says that it is 520am there, I am hoping that the music has died down and the animals are giving you some peace before you start another day. Your mother and father are so very proud of you and your accomplishments, she tells eveyone at work about your adventures so far and I am sure she will keep us all up to date with the very latest!! It looks as though your journey has been a bit trying so far but I can see that you are about to have the experince of a lifetime!! I read your pre trip blog and think that you should reflect on those feelings that you had and see how each day you are making those dreams come true. I am sure that the culture shock is more than I can imagine, but you have the will and courage to make it through!! I am envious of your determination to make a change in the lives of the people you are about to meet!! You have made the day of those children a little brighter and cheerful-- and they will remember you for that. I wish you well, and will look forward to reading about your adventures!! Take care and don't try showing them that we really can't fly!!:)
    Kim Ballister