Things that we have been surprised by in Uganda

  • Full moons – After living in Uganda for 4 months, I eagerly await every full moon. It lights up the night sky in a way we do not get in Canada. When the moon is in full force there is no need for a flashlight because it casts sharp shadows on the ground making even the smallest ruts easily visible. This made last Sunday’s “Supermoon” all the more impressive. People were calling it a Supermoon because it is the closest the moon will be to the earth all year. I did not know it was a Supermoon at the time, but I remarked to Krista that I didn’t think I had ever seen such a large or bright or orange moon before. The next full moon is scheduled for August 20th – the night when we will be camping in the jungles of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park with my brothers and dad when they visit. Can’t wait.
  • Lightning and thunderstorms – The rainy season might be my favorite time of year even though the rain makes life much more difficult. The reason is that the rainy season brings lightning and thunderstorms that you can watch on the horizon for hours. The storms here are very isolated so you are able to watch lightning illuminate a storm cloud like popping corn kernels and not be affected in the least. I think part of the reason why I enjoy the storms here so much is that my appreciation for storms has been heightened after living in Vancouver for a few years where lightning and thunder are even more infrequent than the sun.
  • Missing Ontario cottage country – I often remark that living in rural Uganda is very much like camping. Cooking, cleaning, showering, and washrooms are much closer to camping than city-living. But having said that, our living conditions are probably much closer to a rugged cottage than a collapsible tent. This might be part of the reason why we find ourselves longing for the Ontario cottage-country more than the BC wilderness from which we came. Don’t get me wrong, we miss many things about BC, but we didn’t expect to miss Ontario quite as much as we do.
  • Ugandans like country music – This I can provide little commentary for because I have little understanding for why many Ugandans listen to country music. Now, it isn’t as prevalent as the dance club music you hear from sun-rise to sun-down, but it isn’t uncommon to hear Ugandans listening to Dolly Parton or Brooks & Dunn.
  • Krista’s love of powdered milk – Krista has always had a difficult relationship with milk. Over the past few years she had taken to drinking almond milk (yes, there is such a thing) so when we moved to a village I thought that I would be the one longing for milk and dairy products. But for reasons that are still a mystery to me, it is quite the opposite. Krista longs for milk in her tea so much that sometimes she craves it more than she craves chocolate or warm baths. She longs it so much that she actually craves powdered milk. Maybe the moon has something to do with it, who knows.

– Paul

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