Sunday, 26 September 2010

Backpacker Memoirs....Uganda

Tuesday 24th November 2009

"I dream of an Africa that is at peace with itself" ~ Nelson Mandela.

Next Stop Uganda! Never thought I would get to say that! A whole days bus ride today though. The children still wave at our massive truck with excitement as we go though their villages...I wonder what they think of us? I can't help thinking what a shame it is when we get piled on and off the bus in the main cities as the locals stare, yet the places that look really interesting the "Real Africa" we get driven though at high speed.....Hmm.....

Sophie (my tent mate) and I have been talking about all the animals that are randomly tied up at the side of the road....Does no one steal them? No one seems to be watching them and you would think livestock would be worth something wouldn't you? Then suddenly we are in fits of laughter Sophie adds "You couldn't leave your cow at the side of the road in England! It would get kicked!" ....Hilarious!

So we have crossed the boarder my first impressions: Goats...lots of them, no more cows this time....They are tied to the side
of the road as always, not a sole in sight for miles. Then people...Smiling people. The children still run and wave but this time some of the adults do too. Is that because they are that friendly or are they so poor they think they can sell us something?? Is that wrong to think that??? Maybe!

In Uganda so far the local houses are made of bricks not wood and some of their mud huts have parchment roofs....they appear a richer country. The roads are easier to travel, less pot holes = Better infrastructure. Still got 6hrs driving time and its hot, hot, hot!

I can't believe how resourceful and skilled people are here....My impressions of Africans are changing daily. Just in the space of a few minutes I have seen a basket maker, someone fixing their car, someone else fixing their bike and farmers working the land.

As I watch the people of Uganda fly past my window...smiling, waving and working so hard. It has got me thinking about Africa in general. The people here are independent, resourceful and appear to want to make things better for their families by sheer hard work alone. I think given half a chance they would work their our way out of poverty, they do not need handouts from the West...They need our respect, not our pity......

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