Life in my African corner

April 24, 2009

April 23, 2009

We were sworn in as Peace Corps volunteers yesterday at the Pope Paul XIV Memorial Guest house by our Country Director.  After eating a light snack and waiting for couple of hours for a ride, we headed to our home for the next two  years.  Fractalville (name changed for security reasons) .  The two other PCV’s and we were seated in the 1st row in the back with three rows of luggage.  A policeman stopped our car on the way and asked the driver whether he had a permit to carry luggage.  He added that if fellow Ugandans never followed the rules, then (casting a glance at us) how could he expect visitors to obey the laws.  He gave a ticket for 40, 000 shillings to teach our driver a lesson.  Two hours into our journey we crossed River Nile into Busoge kingdom.  A rusting Welcome to Jinja: Source of the Nile sign welcomed us.  The dam wasn’t colossal, but the hydroelectric energy that was harvested here provided power to many.  Our 2-hour ride to Fractalville turned into a 3.5 hr ride.  Finally we reached Binary College around six-thirty in the evening where the other two volunteers were dropped off.  As we were unloading their luggage, the clouds gave a thunderous welcome and we were caught in a downpour.  Fractal”s counterpart Abraham told us that it was a good omen when visitors brought rain.  I guess for a place that generates most of its income through agriculture, rain brings good tidings.  Rain definitely sped us up and we soon departed the college.  We drove a little further down the highway and turned off the road and took a right turn through a white and blue gate.  We passed a primary school on the right and an orphanage on the left before we turned the corner into a dirt path to a house.  The matatu stopped before an apartment/ranch complex.  A thatched gazebo nestles in the middle of the yard.  There were the several apartments in the complex.  Frank, the treasurer @ Fractal”s NGO, greeted us and opened the door to the 2-room apartment.  The pit latrine and bathing area were situated outside the complex.  The kitchen was located in another building. Cooking and eating outside our crib would probably keep the friendly mice out. Lush green surrounds the complex.  The place seems like a haven for ex-pats.  Oh, wait.  It is.  We find out later that the place houses short-term Swiss and American volunteers.

“The contents of this Web site are mine personally and do not reflect any position of the U.S. Government or the Peace Corps.”

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