Monday, June 27, 2011

I don't think we are in Kansas anymore......

Ok so these Africa posts are going to be mostly me journaling things I have seen and experienced, devoid of my usual witty banter. :)

I meet up with my friend Jenny Dixon, who just HAPPENED to be not only in our same hotel but on our SAME FLIGHT to Ethiopia to adopt their daughter....what a cool God thing to see a familiar face on such an unfamiliar trip!

The air travel was actually not as bad as I had thought it would be. It was looooooong, but not unbearable. I slept a lot so that made it go by faster. Then we arrived in Ethiopia. I lost a day in there somewhere.....and I am still not totally sure what day it is now, but I know it is dark outside.

After a quick hour and a half flight to Entebbe, our air travel for the first (of 3) legs was complete! We were greeted by our friend from Cannan Children's home, with a bus to tote all us crazy women, and a truck to tote all of our huge luggage. Before I even got off the sidewalk at the airport, a car came at me so fast that I was sure he would hit me, and half my luggage flew off my cart. He hustled out of his car exclaiming "muzungus!" (white people). I knew it would happen eventually so why not get it out of the way right at the start. Then the drive through Kampala began.

It was exactly what I expected and totally not what I expected. I assumed that the "rural" areas and the city areas were separated, at least by a little distance. But that is not the case in Kampala. We saw goats just hanging out on the side of the road. A bull with horns so big I would swear they weighed more than he did. Unattended children everywhere....mostly small babies. No way to tell if they have mothers nearby or if they are street children.

Women wearing no shoes, were selling shoes on the side of the road.....not one of which had a match. Just a sea of individual shoes....I guess you just try to find 2 that sort of "go" together. Women with baskets of bananas on their heads. Women grilling corn over a grill that I am sure hey probably also carried on their head, from wherever it is that they live. The mannequins in the store fronts wore African clothes, but they were all white. And all wearing very strange expressions on their faces.

And then there is the traffic. Not only do they drive on the wrong side of the road, but they drive 2, sometimes 3 deep on the wrong side of the road. And the motorbikes. They are everywhere. They just come whizzing by your window between 2 cars that were way to close together to start with. It is a wonder one vehicle in this city still has it's rearview mirrors in tact. Each motorbike 1, 2 or 3 deep with passengers. They honk their horns as if it will make any difference at all. It doesn't. The "traffic police" blow whistles and wave people to move on in LITERAL bumper to bumper traffic as if it will make someone hurry. It doesn't.

After a brief time to get settled in at the guest house, five of us went out with Michael from My Father's House, to exchange currency and get some water, bread, peanut butter etc for the team for lunch tomorrow. I didn't expect the traffic to be insane-er than it was the first time. I didn't expect the dudes with rifles outside the currency exchange place, although I was grateful they were there. I didn't expect to see a woman in the dirt on the side of the road pulling up her drawers after doing her business there in front of God and everyone.

Then we went to the market where you can buy anything from Nike soccer balls to doormats to bread and peanut butter. All very surreal.

The traffic was even worse on the way back and that is when we saw the street children. Sitting on cardboard mats, spread out at an equal distance from each other, begging. For anything. One little boy, about 4 years old , came up to our can and we have him all the peanut butter crackers we had through the window. He smiled and ate at least 2 before he even got back to his "spot". The we saw a mother who couldn't have been more than 15, set her 1 year old baby down on the sidewalk while she plundered through the trash for something to wipe he hiney with. I guess the baby had a dirty diaper.....just no diaper.

So, we are experiencing a great deal of culture shock and exhaustion. Going to bed now. We will be at the prisons tomorrow so pray for that.

Whoever has my babies, kiss them extra much for me tonight please!

Much love,



  1. Love and miss you Jenny. Praying for you. I have tears just thinking about what you might see in a children's prison. Share the love!

  2. Prayers for continued strength to help you get through your journey.