a new life every day…

4 10 2011

Each day offers chances to experience things in a totally different way.  And it seems like a whole town can change in just a week! 

The market place, that bustling, dusty, muddy centropolis where anything imaginable and unimaginable could be bought is being broken apart brick by brick.  Where last week thousands gathered to sell, make a living, haggle and just meet others to discuss the latest happenings today I saw the odd few chasping away at bricks, or stepping between the rubble.  The spaces where people should be are distressing to me…

Distress firstly, selfishly, because I have no idea where to go to get vegetables, or the tailoring done that I have meant to do for months.  Distress at the loss of vibrance that had centralised in that spot.  Distress at not seeing the familiar face of Madam vegetable seller, shelling beans beneath the tatty polythene covering her shack.  Distress knowing that those who had a reasonable place to sell their wares are now dispersed and are probably not selling anything, as they have no common place to sell from. 

The plan is to rebuild a good market – and similar destruction is taking place across the country.  But for now there are so many at a loss.  A few vendors have set up stalls across town – but it requires Sherlock’s senses to figure out where to get Irish (potatoes) or a sauce pan or a mat – and the best chances are that they are now available across town from each other.  It will take a few weeks, I imagine, for a new central space to be properly developed. We saw signs of construction of wooden shelters today, but seeing so many barren shells today was discouraging, when compared to the vigours of the old market just a week ago. 

 

But I am reminded of the title of today’s blog… today things are distressing, tomorrow there may be those who have taken advantage and have created an entirely new opportunity from the changes.

You know the saying… Do at least one thing a day that scares you?  I think of that every time I get into the car.  Another change I am enjoying presently is DRIVING here!  I have been too terrified to get behind the wheel – the traffic system in our town is non- existent, the potholed roads are beyond what you could expect to see on the Dakar circuits, and I am far more familiar with my little manual (stick shift) Toyota Tazz than the BIG Prado we have here.  But there is nothing like necessity to get one into action.  And now I am driving… today I ventured around clocktower and down Kumi Road… I feel INVINCIBLE!  Even our workers have complimented me on the skills they notice.  Granted, I have not gone over 35km an hour (I don’t dare!) but I have been through horribly muddy dips in 4×4 mode, have not had any collisions yet (this is an extraordinary achievement considering all the possibilities… cars, bodabodas, bikes, cows, goats, dogs, children, men, women, taxis, trucks, bodabodas, bikes, roosters, bodabodas, bikes…) The independence is liberating!

 

Today also saw me starting to teach a child again.  There is a small missions school here – and they are ALWAYS in need of teachers – if you want to volunteer to step into our crazy town!  I have 2 hours on a Tuesday teaching Science and Language Arts to a delightful young man of 12.  There are a few challenges in his education, but I think we got along just fine and it is great to be teaching a young person again. 

 

And here are a few images of how the knitting class is coming along.  The ladies are encouraged about knitting clothing items, especially for babies. We have received several sets of straight needles, and some wonderful yarns to work with in colours that are not common here. It is very common for us to knit about 35 minutes beyond scheduled finishing time without realising at all!

(Little beanies and bootees)

And then two of the adorable little faces who join in for class – there are usually a few more too! 

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2 responses

5 10 2011
Di Heymans

Huge adventures to be had in Africa. I love your stories and photos. What’s a bodaboda?

5 10 2011
karenanddeon

Boda boda is a longsaddle motorbike used to trasport people from ‘border to border’ (hence name!) – I have seen 5 on 1 bike, with 1 more trying to get on.
Thanks for compliment. I miss you SOOOOO MUCH! Come do some work here – I know AWESOME coffee shop in Kampala where we can chat!

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