With Warwick RAG arriving in just 24 hours and myself only a full month into my time here, it’s insane how fast time flies here – days are shorter, wifi is slower and both work & play are harder, but I wouldn’t swap a second of it, and can’t believe how few days are left already!
Day 22 (July 21st): A day of planning for the future, the morning was spent learning to use eTapestry (a fundraising database), and the rest of the day was spent in meetings discussing changes to the gorilla trek to be made for next year (along the lines of fundraising incentives, price alterations and other logistical alterations). It’s awesome to see how much change can happen within a year, how feedback can be listened to and how much impact a single idea can have in a small charity. I headed home early in the afternoon and spent time just chilling out, working out what to do with the week.
Day 23: After a morning in the office putting together the 2015-16 information pack for the Gorilla Trek, I decided to get my J.K Rowling on and see how long I could sit in a cafe having only ordered one thing before being asked to leave. In this time I used their wifi to call home, and properly reflected on my time here & how far away Warwick already seems. Obviously, saying that made it seen immediately closer, but it’s amazing how fast things such as my priorities are changing – the future is very much bright.
Day 24: Thursday was spent very much lamenting slow wifi, which is the only type of wifi in Uganda. With some quick office work done, looking through intern roles and recruitment for the following year and getting very excited for the year ahead, I went home to vegetable cottage pie and awesome company from other interns and other EAP staff before turning in early. Uganda is many things. Tiring is one of them!
Day 25: After a long matatu ride, Beth, Bash & I got to see Hudda – the school for the next Gorilla project! Greeted by a huddle of children and a tour of the site, it immediately hit me how different this project would be from the last. Far more rural and without electricity to charge phones etc, Hudda will be a far more Ugandan experience, with all the pros and cons that brings: I personally am very excited for the challenges and perks of the week ahead. Eventually we headed back to the office, before spending an evening in Moti’s curry house and NRE bar, having a quiet night with the volunteers if got to know the week before and other interns.
Day 26: Taking advantage of my last free weekend in Uganda (the other 3 spent on project with volunteers), I went to Hairy Lemon resort, an island on the River Nile with incredible views, hammocks and paintings. Having learnt about where to get whacky tailor made suits, the reason it’s called the Hairy Lemon and looked into the photography of Kampala, I enjoyed a day’s relaxation, washed down by a beer or two.
Day 27: With a welcome delay keeping me at the Hairy Lemon until 4.30pm, I spent more or less a day contemplating life – working out plans to learn to drive, move to Leicester and reflecting on how quickly I’d ended up leaving Warwick – before the long drive back and having an incredible curry from Laura. Rang home and gave some advice to Bambi, who was packing for her own Ugandan adventure, before falling to sleep really easily.
Day 28: an odd day, with some sad family news, saw me retreat to wifi cafés and consult various people until it was time to return home. It is hard to deal with sadness, when it occurs 4000 miles away, but again my support network caught me in my fall. Soon, Warwick will arrive, full of distraction, joy and delight.