Well, I’m back in the states and my work in Uganda is finished for now. The key word in that sentence is “my” because the playground is technically not finished. I decided to write two final posts about the last week I was in Uganda. These pictures are a bit random and need some explanation.
This is picture of Katie’s girls. All 14 of them were able to squeeze into the back two seats in Katie’s van. You might ask “why the heck would they do that?” Well there are two possible answers. The first would be that they are kids and they are just having fun piling on top of each other. The second, which happens to be the case this time, is that they did it because Katie needed to squeeze in a one day old infant, the infant’s mother and grandmother, a woman severely sick with malaria and her two friends, a drunk Jaja (grandmother) who had a brick fall on her head, her co-leader of the women’s circle, and a volunteer (myself). There is never a dull moment with Katie Davis. She works as an ambulance to the clinic in town. If I remember correctly she made two more trips that day. Both times the van was packed to the brim. I added up the people in her van on the first trip into town and it was only 24. I’m sure we could get 30 if necessary.
The next picture is the crew I worked with to build the playground. This was last Thursday--the day I left. The guy in the hat is Sam, my foreman. The younger ones are the 8 boys and the man on the left is some random guy that came that day to help us sand. I hired a couple of guys to help sand and varnish because it is pretty tedious and not much learning occurs. He got in the picture and I wasn’t certain who he was. I thought at first he was one of the boys’ dads or something so I let it slide, but later realized he was just the guy who came that day to help do some sanding. Funny stuff.
This is Patrick. He is the man that works for Katie and lives on the land where the Saturday program occurs and where the playground was built. He is an awesome guy and I will miss him dearly. He works his tail off and has the kindest heart. He actually was the one that fixed the boats. Lucky for me he was a carpenter when he was younger and knew how to repair boats. Who would have known?
This final picture is of some boda boda drivers. The nearest one is Fred. Fred rocks! He is a man that somehow got connected with Katie and now has basically become Amazina’s personal driver. Technically he doesn’t work for Amazima, but he gets all their business and is trusted immensely. I found out how useful he was when I was trying to find various businesses in town. I would call up a welder or carpenter and they would try and tell me where their shop was (side note: most carpenters and welders don’t speak amazing English). I didn’t know my way around Jinja very well so I would just go to where Fred hangs out and give him the phone and tell him to lead me to where the guy on the phone was. It was sooooo useful.