Random Angela

Many folks who know me, know that I can often be random in thought so what better place for me than a Random page.  Here I will place random thoughts, quirky things about myself. Just whatever.

I could do nothing but laugh this morning as one of the associate pastors and his family gave me a ride to church. I was talking with their three year old son and I asked if he would be joining me for Sunday School and he so kindly replied, “No Thank You.”  Well then, what could I say to that response of perfect English and great manners.  I did what you expected and burst out laughing.  Thankfully, when we got out of the car his mom gave me his hand and I used my need for an assistant to win him over for the morning. 21 September 2014

*We have 3 but hopefully only 2 more days to go in our HIV/AIDS counseling training and although I have learned a number of things, I did find it funny to be told I was not a good counselor (during the role playing session) and that I couldn’t get full credit for an answer because I didn’t give the information back in the order it was taught, although knowing the risks order of condom use was never given during the session. “Are you going to challenge the examiner?” says one of the instructors and yes and yes was surely my response. 27 -8-14

• Even in America, I am generally clueless to folks celebrity status, so in Uganda, please. One of my friends here is a musician and an artist an although he mentioned that’s what he did, I didn’t think much of it. Well until we went to an open mic jam session and I noticed that I was sitting with the dude that everyone came to greet, and I was sitting with the dude that other musicians were giving a shout out to. During the event I had to mention that I was way out of the loop in knowing who and what is in. Clearly not a groupie. bahahaha 18 August 14

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*Two out of Three Introductions have been BYOB events, now I didn’t see that on the invitation cards but it must be the unwritten part of the event. 26 July 14

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*Being asked if I was trying to kill people with my fashion is a touch different than the US-dressed to kill line. It’s funny because I thought the gifted skirt and 80 cent top looked cute but didn’t really think I’d reached killer status. 11 March 2014

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*I always wondered how the garbage got picked up from the pile on the side of the house.  Well no need to wonder any more as I just saw the garbage being driven away on the back of a boda. Oh Uganda, makes me laugh. 15 Feb 14

*Student elections at the school and listening to campaign speeches with promises of popcorn if elected.  When asked how the popcorn would be paid for “I will get the money from my mom.”  Of course I chimed in an asked if he could get the money from his money for school fees first. lol  13 Feb 14

*The entertainment at the Lake side pizza place was interesting to say the least, as the two guys came close to our table and sang Lady in Red and Girl of my dreams-African Queen.  So of course I was dared to go sit next to the dread guy and have him sing to me but i just went behind him and then had an awkward photo as I thought he tried to touch my boob  but I was so taken by the armpit  smell that I couldn’t clearly notice that it was the butt of his guitar. And he had to nerve to think he was all that in telling me to ‘get in here’ for the picture. eek 13 Feb 14

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*You can clearly tell the kids who have been at DOORS Primary for some time versus the new kids, just pull out a camera.  The returning kids are posing and requesting pictures (even as I’m trying to take new kid ID pics) as the new kids look in fear.  I’m sure by the end of the year the new folks will be just as big of hams as the old folks. 12 Feb 14

*In an effort to reduce fighting or kids touching other kids, I have asked the kids to do a small exercise when they want to hit another person.  I have asked that the raise their hands in the air and say “Jesus help me now.”  I’ve implemented this several times this week but the best thing has been seeing the nursery students enforce this on their peers-it’s so funny seeing this smallest four year old forcing his classmate to lift their hands and ask Jesus to help them.  I don’t ask that they smile while saying this but this one boy thought the other should be smiling and he’s trying to help him smile. 7 Feb 14

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*Trying on and buying silky pajamas from the street vendor in the slums, as a lady sits a few feet away giving thumbs up for the pairs she thinks look the smartest.  Only to have 2 different parents walk up and talk to me. So now a dad and an aunt have seen my night wear. 5 Feb 14

*Many times the cooks have a minor issue with having lunch ready at exactly noon. Since the new kitchen is in place, I purchased an alarm clock for their space.  I posted pictures of where the hands of the clock should be when it’s time to serve break and when it’s time for lunch.   Without their knowledge, I set the alarm clock for noon and it was too funny to see the response of fear and shock as the alarm went off the first day.  I honestly think they have jumped and laughed every day at exactly noon, and the food has been ready. 5 Feb 14

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*The COGIC girl is back as we found a percussion set that included a tambourine.  Crazy thing is it was in my room at the Doors house the entire time I was there and it’s actually something that our team brought when I came on my first trip to Uganda.  Funny as I’ve been asking folks to send me a tambourine.  Let’s just say, I had a look or two as I pulled it out of my purse the other Sunday but oh well-Psalm 150 said I could. 19 January 14

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*We had close to 40 people for Thanksgiving and one turkey.  SO what does one do as a first time turkey carver? why yes, I broke the turkey into pieces using my hands so there was enough for everyone to at least have a taste of meat with their stuffing, green beans, pumpkin, mashed potatoes, rolls, rice, gnut (similar to ground peanuts with tomatoes and onions) and bean sauce, and a few other things I can’t remember. Thankfully we had plenty of dessert so everyone could have banana bread, and a cookie, piece of apple or sweet potato pie, and fruit salad. November 2013

*I completed my fair share of talks and presentations to students on how to look for a house or apartment and although I used many of those skills in looking, I didn’t use all.  So I  guess telling the landlord that the sink and counter are too low…probably let it go and just keep bending over. November 2013

 

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*Changing my hair to be told by my Black American friends that they didn’t recognize me at first because I blend in so well as a Ugandan. 3 November 13

*Even being with other black Americans, some folks still assumed me to be Ugandan and I even found myself doing some things more the Ugandan way than the American way. 28 October 13

 

*The face of shock and awe as I looked like a Buganda but neither sounded nor understood anything like a Buganda.  I just wish I had a camera for the faces I received when I opened my mouth. hilarious 21 September 13

*More kneeling or partial kneeling for me. Thankfully the niece, who was helping translate for me, knew when to kneel and where to sit in order to get by with some partial kneeling’s at times.  21 September 13

*The fact that some family answered cell phones during the wedding without even thinking to look discrete.  21 September 13

 

*For Introcution ceremonies and the church wedding both, people make pledges to contribute to the events. Budgets are passed out and people work hard to solicit money from everyone they know. 21 September 13

*As I helped the nursery teacher prepare exercise books (notebooks) for the kids, I thought what a simple privilege it is to have electricity at a school and a photo copying machine.  After writing;  Today is Wednesday. My name is Angela. I am in baby class. Copy the same: a b c d with squares for the kids to write their letters.  It felt like elementary school and having to write 100 times, I will not talk during class but at least I only had to write it 32 times.   Another moment of new perspective. 16 September 13

*what do you say when you find your missing relay for life jacket? well, you look odd and think, I know this guy who is now wearing my jacket.  How do I get it back? then before leaving the place you say, I lost a jacket just like that, it was of great meaning because it meant that I’d raised over a $1000 for Relay for Life, a cancer research organization in the US.  Unfortunately none of these statements made the person take my jacket off and give it to me-sad face. 3 September 13

*finding a taxi from the village back to town on a Sunday night is close to impossible, especially when you are trying to get 5 people in the same taxi (a 15 passenger that becomes a 17 passenger depending on the time-ahh and don’t forget to add the conductor and driver to the number.)  After waiting and hour and 30 minutes for one of the guys to return from the main taxi park with our ride, we then had to fight others to get ur seats.  The entire 2 hour plus ride, folks were fussing at the driver to slow down and to stop driving so wild but he didn’t listen until he ran into an SUV.  After that he gets out of the taxi and takes off on foot, leaving the conductor and passengers. Many of the passengers just got out and found other rides we went back and forth until we finally got into a confrontation with the conductor who still wanted us to pay the full. I of course didn’t think that was right seeing that we still hadn’t reached our destination and the taxi was going no were.  I gave what I though t was fair an sat on a boda but the conductor blocked my friend from getting on. Then as I grabbed my friends arm the conductor blocked us and it was a battle of AMJ and conductor Luganda going for it.  he was finally given more money, not by me but for me, and we left.  2 September 13

*when I left the house for the village I said I would be a quite Ugandan lady for the weekend. surprising enough to you all, that didn’t work so well for me.  Pretty much about 30 minutes after being in the village, I had a man in my face fussing in Luganda. His issue was he thought I took a pictures (scanning him) of him.  So in response to him, I said “you aren’t even handsome enough for me to think of taking a picture of you” and then I placed my hand over my eyes like a visor and asked if he wanted to be scanned, so there goes the gentle and quiet lady. 1 September 13

*funny moment during the message, the preacher’s reference to a documentary he was watching that had men doing funny, funny things.  Said documentary-COPS.  Said funny, funny things-soliciting prostitutes 12 Aug 13

*taxis run out of gas and passengers have to get off an push it to the gas station. Now the jacked up part is we’d just left the taxi park, the taxi had no gas can, and the gas station was within sight.-10 Aug 13

*If you ever have to come to any type of camp here, don’t forget to bring your plate, cup, bowl, and utensils.  I surely didn’t know I needed to bring my own eating utensils but thankfully there were extra for guests.  I think this might be the cause of the DOORS Home missing bowls and utensils, the boys have to take their own eating utensils to school but unfortunately they bowls never return home. 5 Aug 13

*excitement about my 1 year Ugandaversary and reflecting on how much I’ve changed and grown. 23 July 2013

*I believe people do come back to life as something or someone, my mother has come back as this little Ugandan tailor and how do I know that it’s Rosetta, well “what has happened to you, when you came back from the US you were the perfect size and shape and now it’s been a month and what’s happened?  EEE-yeee you have grown,  and the worst part is it’s your stomach. The stomach and kabena (butt) are the hardest parts to lose, but I plan to see some change by next week.”  Ah, yes, thanks for pointing out my waist.  At least the other folks who told me that I gained, didn’t feel the need to explain all my increase areas. 23 July 2013

*door to door ministering.  Our small group went door to door in the neighborhood where the group meets.  Since we were going in pairs, I told my partner I would be a handicap to her because I don’t speak Luganda.  To this she replies, she doesn’t know Luganda so well herself.  Well we’ll surely tell folks a lot about Jesus and the church this way.  Turns out that she knows more Luganda than she put on and thankfully we met more people who could speak and understand English, even if their initial response was I don’t speak English, spoken to me in English. The best part of our 2 hours out was meeting the older, Muslim woman who spoke Swahili, which neither of us knows so we had to rely on the small translation help from her daughter-in-law.  When I asked if I could pray she wanted to know what I was going to say. We confirmed that I could pray by using the thumbs up and thumbs down method.  Then we met a group of small kids, so I had a mini Sunday School lesson, Bible story of salvation, prayer, and a song.  Not so bad after all. 7 July 2013

*The bowling alley does not have bowling shoes and only allows white soled shoes or bare feet for bowling. Can I ask where in the world one can find a safety/compliance guy?  Thankfully someone brought extra pairs of socks. 12 July 2013

*I had seen this before when I was searching for teachers but; in preparation for a resume workshop with the teachers, I found that it is standard practice to list the following information under the Personal Information section of a resume; US hiring folks don’t fall off your chair with this list:

Names-contact information-date of birth (first fail for me as I don’t discuss my age)-sex-marital status (can list dependents)-nationality.  You may also list religion, and next of kin contact information as well as spouses employment info.  Now what adds to the oddness is the fact that most resumes/CVs I’ve seen here, do not include any responsibilities or tasks related to the job that you’ve worked. Another interesting point is that all teachers thought they should not identify the month which they started and ended positions but merely put the year.  This entire thing lead to some good discussion of the why’s, how’s and what if’s of a CV. 12 July 2013

*The fact that it’s not even a second thought to the MC to say to the audience that his friend Scott was the only muzungu (white person) in attendance at the mini worship night.  “Wave and say hi Scott.” 11 July 2013

 

*Although we are in the capital city of Uganda, there is still a very close knit community, which could be seen to support one of the international families whose daughter passed unexpectedly. 25 June 20103

*Loud parents that won’t shut up can be found in every country.  This week a parent from another school came to let me know that one of our kids beat her son up on his way home from school.  Now 1. I’m thinking your son is in kindergarten so why is he walking home alone 2. you say the assaulters were wearing our uniforms but we don’t wear uniforms on Wednesday’s (the day of the fight) 3. You say my kids have chased your child before-so why didn’t you come and talk to me before your son got a bloody knot on his face 4. Why won’t you stop shouting and tell me what you want me to do 5. Why would you say that you are going to report this to the police 6. If your concern is about your child’s care, why are you still loud and shouting when I have instructed someone to take you and your child to the clinic for care and finally why would you get to the clinic and create a scene screaming that your son needs to be seen because he is dying.  And just so you know, I remainder calm but I did finally say if you shut your mouth and go then you can get the simple Band-Aid for your child’s face. 19 June 13

*The African mind is so creative.  Today I saw a child in a specially made wheelchair; which combined a white plastic lawn chair with wheels attached to metal pools-brakes and all.  I so wanted to take a picture but I just wasn’t slick enough and I thought so not appropriate to ask.  And unfortunately I failed to get a picture of the lady riding on a boda carrying her folded walker-talent, pure talent cause you know she was sitting side saddle to boot. 15 June 13

*Me to a student: you look nice today, very smart

Student: stares at me

Me: what do you say when someone says you look nice?

Student: I look nice

Me: well yes you could say that but you say thank you. lol

*Who would have guessed the biggest problem in fitting girls for dresses would be their need to have dresses that are at their knees, preferably below the knees, a complete change from the length of dresses in the states.  Americans young and old have no problem exposing their legs and behinds but not here.  More than one girl said “teacher, too short” to dresses that I would clearly have sent my kids out in. 5 June 2013

*AWKWARD massage.  My massage therapist was one of the praise and worship guys from church; clearly I didn’t know his when I scheduled the 1 hour appointment for the equivalent of $12 US dollars.  SO now what do I do? DO I stay? DO I go?  eeekkk I stay and even with my most vocal self, I fail to say all the times  that my deep tissue massage was just a touch too deep on the tissues and thus a not sore relaxing, sore muscle massage.  10 June

*lessons learned at Longwood-how to lay out a gallery showing.  Not that I had a full lesson but watching the folks at the Longwood Center for Visual Arts did leave me with what can look pleasing. 2 June 13

*The children and I were pretty excited to go for the Art show opening.  As we were packed into the taxi I remembered one point that we hadn’t discussed in my ‘don’t touch anything’ mom talk.  I forget to discuss indoor plumbing.  It came to mind that many of the kids have never seen or used an indoor toilet or bathroom as most use community or public pay latrines.  SO we chatted about the toilets and I showed everyone the indoor facility and explained how everything worked.  So of course everyone automatically needed to pee. #newexperiences 2 June 13

*comments continue to roll off the tongues of folks about my US return size. Exact text ‘I think now ur fat.’  Quote from another “It’s a good thing you didn’t blow up like most who go to the US, you look good but you could still lose about 2kg to get down to mosquito and a good huggable size.”

 

*do I really need to have so many clothes here?  hmm and yes I never thought I would say that either-stretchin’ and growin’. No I haven’t removed anything from the closet yet-stretchin’ 1 June 13

*If you were to ask my mother what is the one thing I always said I needed in college-flat black shoes and of course the ‘need’ continues to follow me to this day.  The interesting thing is my approach to shoe shopping these days.  Even as I visited my favorite shoe store ‘Must Have Shoes’, I knew that my must haves, must be sensible.  DO I wear heels in Uganda? yep sure do.  Do I wear them every day like in the states? ahh negative.  Do I still like to shop as if I can wear all shoes everywhere? yes but now the added statement when picking up a lovely pair of AMJ only style shoes is “these would be a living in America purchase but not so much for Uganda.”  Often a bitter sweet moment on the sole. 18 May 2013

*This will have to be a random because I’m not sure how I feel after months of back and forth with internal affairs.  They have finally given me the approval for the work permit, they have taken my money and given me a receipt, they have my passport, and Jesus-Jesus please, they say I will have an official work permit on Monday. 25 April 2013

*I commend every nursery school teacher out there.  This week I committed to helping with Nursery exams-whewww.  Now it is true that some of the challenge could be a language barrier but honestly some of those kids just sat there even after a translation of ‘show me your fingers or trace the numbers, or match the pictures.’ After the first day the teachers thought I would no longer manage but I made it through the week, even after multiple times of raising my hands to surrender. lol 22 April 2013

*We stopped for lumber for the weekend chicken coop building project only for the car not to start.  As we sat there with the hood up, we can across some grand artwork on the hood.  Two of the girls from the school have etched their names into the hood and not only did they include their first names but they added their second names and their class.  Hmm now how do I handle this vandalism to make it a meaningful lesson for the artist and I’m sure the many bystanders?  Trust me there will be a parent call and a public announcement in chapel. 18 April 2013

*Who am I becoming? I opted to wear ked like shoes over platform wedges.  Really,  continuous weeks of flats?  Ahhh I need a trip to the states forget getting my sexy back, I need my ‘shoe’ back. 17 April 2013

*Why wouldn’t you jump into Lake Victoria at sunset? Everybody else did…but NOT me, 1. Because I can’t swim 2. Because I wouldn’t want all this hair to be a wet mess and  3. Jump in in my clothes in the middle of the lake. Not so much but I was happy that Chamber-Long and 7 of the 9 folks with us did. 12 April 2013

*Being introduced to a Nigerian restaurant while getting my toes polished in front of the grocery market.  Not the greatest on the first try but I will try it again and if nothing else the lady has fabric and those Oh SO FAB Nigerian head wraps, which are way simpler than I thought. 12 April 2013

*After dropping Chamber-Long off at the airport a man approached our ‘special hire’ taxi and asked if he could have a ride.  The driver and conductor said I would need to give approval for such.  After discussing that we would not be going out of our way, we took off.  When he reached his exit we let him out only to be surrounded by 6 men with orange and white hanging tags labeled Taxi Authority.  The men said we were not to operate a taxi in that area and by dropping the guy off we’d ‘broken rules.’  Of course my mouth went into the entire spill of how ‘I don’t know him, he don’t know me, and I was just trying to be helpful.’  As the driver, conductor, and man are telling me to stay in the van/taxi.  Our passenger said he was a policeman and that the guys couldn’t do anything to us with him there.  Well thanks for that word of confidence as the men aren’t really listening to you and have reached into the driver’s window and turned the taxi off.  In Uganda it is very common that EVERYONE wants to give contributions and EVRYONE wants those ‘contributions’ to happen at the exact same time and as expected, this stop was no different.   When the conductor got back in the van he said he and the driver would just pay the bribe ( 5,000 or $2.)  Although I didn’t care to pay these dudes anything, it was just as simple to hand them the money and move about our way as the airport policeman remained and argued his point.  You can see my face, right?  Yep disgusted and shaking my head, seriously you’re going to go through all this for 5,000-go big or go home or I guess just let me go home. hahaha. 13 April 2013

*Put a zipper on it, what if someone literally padlocked your mouth shut?    Today a mom told me about her experience with the Kony soldiers (LRA) and being shot as she and her family let the war zone in a convoy.  One of the tactics used on people was to padlock their mouths’ shut.  Can you imagine? I am thankful   for the freedom to talk and express my opinion. 9 April 2013

*Hold out your hand, I’m just going to write your weight on the back of your hand with a marker.  That’s exactly what happened as part of the bungee jumping prep; In blue marker on my right hand. 8 April 2014

*I’ve broken my biggest fashion rule-i was so cold that I had to wear socks and sandals.  Never fear, we only went as far as the latrine and the only people to see me were my roommates. EEEEEyeeee 7 April 2013

*”Jesus did not rise so that we could fight over eggs.”  Yes I did have to use this statement as the kids fought over Easter Eggs and stole eggs from each other before we began Easter yard games. March 30, 2013

*Have you ever wondered how innovative you could be?  Say you’re having a large family dinner with deserts included but you have no table.  Would you think to use a broken metal bed covered with white boards and notebooks as a base and sheets for table clothes?  Sometimes you just have to think outside the box. March 30, 2013

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*Longwood Center for Visual Arts really spoiled me on how all art should be a presentation of excellence, so I was just a bit disappointment and judgmental when I attended my first Uganda art exhibit, although I did get a great bag. Gotta give Ugandan art another try.  March 21, 2013

*Newest seasonal ‘treat’, picked right from our front yard- flying white ants, fried with some salt.  Pretty tasty but little bug pieces remain in your teeth. 12 March 2013

*Remembering that worship is a lifestyle and not just something done on Sunday but something that others should see in me every day.  Thankful that message helped keep my mouth shut and my attitude down during several instances this week. 7 March 2013

*Document-document-document words that I heard so many times from so many supervisors in Higher Ed.  I can still do a much better job-to at least be 10% of the documenter that L-Robertson is but doc thankfully some of small voices remain in my head and have helped me in some situation here in Uganda. Document-document-document…and then keep those documents in a easy to find spot.  Appreicate your file cabinet. 7 March 2013

*’On your neck’-means that someone is bothering you, getting on your nerves, or on your case. 28 Feb. 2013

*Being assigned tasks in my small group to make accountability partners for the group; just like being on the Professional Development Team-only in Uganda. 27 Feb. 2013

*Hospital and clinic visits are a cash service from consultation, to blood tests, to medications. 26 Feb. 2013

*Pharmacies are everywhere and are more of a walk-in and tell them the medication you want, or your ailment, or if you just happen to have a prescription that will work too.

*Black girls tan too, and I am dark chocolate. 23 Feb. 2013

*Babysitting skills still in check, even with 5 kids for the weekend.   I think the teen girl was sitting for me since she had to wake me from the couch to go to bed but we did movies, pizza, pool time, nail polish, hair talk, and reinforcement of piano and saxophone practice times.  22-24 Feb. 2013

*Enrollment numbers still rolling. We’re at 86 and yes that really is it this time.  Thankfully 85% of the parents have completed the registration form and medical release  and over 50% have brought passport pics and each day school fees continue to come in. 21 February 2013

*Volunteering to babysit 5 kids for the weekend.  Two have a sleep over and a birthday party which will leave two teenagers and a toddler.  Hmmm let’s see how this goes, I’ll keep you posted.  21 February 2013

*This morning in our DOORS meeting we discussed the possibility of getting more animals for our house to start producing eggs and getting milk.  Supposedly one egg a day gives some special protein that we all lack.  The plan would be to actually have these animals stay in a chicken coop versus random walks through our house.  I could be o.k. with that but a goat-hmmm, even if it is small and cute, as one person requested.  Those guys grow up and they are noisy. 14 February 2013

*Strange things you never expect to see and hear; Sitting on the front porch in Africa at 2 in the afternoon with a zebra snuggie on.  The rain is about to come and it’s cool. No running in the rain for me today. 14 February 2013

*School roster count up to 91.  11 over my plan and at the point were I have said even if you were told you could bring a child the answer is no-Monday is the 4th week of school. 13 February 2013

*Being mandated to stay at home today because I have a runny nose, watering eye, and runny nose or the cold or ‘allergic to the weather’ or the ‘flu’ depending on which Ugandan you speak to.

*Having one of the newer Women’s Ministry lady’s (probably she’s 18) ask me to write her name on the front of her exercise book.  Since her second name is Catherine I asked if it was with a C or K and she said, I was wondering if you could tell me. WOW.  She looked more like a K to me but I think Uganda would prefer a C.  I’m so thankful that we have this opportunity for these women of all ages to learn. 12

*Honest conversations with truth that hurts. 10 Feb 2013

*No Vernacular sacks.  The kids are only supposed to speak English at school but many are having a problem with that.  The teachers suggested a bone to be worn around their necks or a sack.  I thought the sack was a better idea than a giant bone necklace.  Of course I tried to add a touch of style to our Upper primary sack vest and lower primary sack dress and I avoided labeling the back with “Shame on YOU” as the teachers suggested.  It seems to be working a bit-no one wants to be caught in the sack and several people have cried to get out of wearing the NO Vernacular sack.  4 Feb 2013

*I walked past a person who blew me over with B.O. and my first thought was ‘did I put on deodorant.’  Woooo- it was STRONG. 26 January 2013

*Feeling like I was prepping for the halls to open as I worked until 8:44 pm Saturday night.  Main difference, no electricity so I was painting black boards via oil lantern. 26 January 2013

*I passed out the Christmas cards, pictures, candy canes, and gifts that my blood and church family  sent for the kids and teachers.  Although I hadn’t seen candy canes here, I didn’t think of the fact that no one would know what they were.  This gave a great opportunity to introduce the candy cane’s multiple symbolism-J for Jesus, or a Shepard’s staff, red for the blood He shed, and white for the cleansing that He brings to our lives.  Although the teacher’s really wanted the ‘sweeties’ I made sure they reached the hands of the children and I even  called out one of the staff members who’d taken part of her child’s. Thanks for the love New Hope COGIC. 21 January 2013

*Just a little slashing otherwise known to you American’s as cutting the grass-and this my friends would be called a workout I have yet to try.  21 January 2013

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*Please say some prayers and good thoughts for an expedited time on my work permit processing.   The work permit folks meet on Tuesday and once I have that stamp then I have to deal with the immigration folks.  Please oh please Jesus let this go smoothly, with as little ‘passing of cash appreciations’ as possible because the pockets are crying with every pass. 20 January 2013

*43 kids in Sunday School today with half coming 2 hours after it began, now are they here for my Sunday School or the next service? Hmmm 20 January 2013

  • *Leopard print bedroom slippers, Playtex logoed(in green) yoga pants and a teal RCL t-shirts.  Yep down right classy comfort, that was my look for medical today.  Well, maybe I should just go with comfortable because I honestly should have been stopped by the Fashion Police. No there is not a picture of this mess.17 January 2013
  • *My first driving experience in Uganda was not one that thrilled me but more so left me with sweaty palms, on edges, and many prayers of thanks when I reached the gate to the house.  This week I gave it another shot.  I paced, prayed, and even fb chatted about trying it one more time.  Thankfully, it was much better and by the return trip I almost felt a bit like my old AMJ drivin’ self.  Now would I like to have a driver’s side mirror to see when folks are passing my grandma speed or if a boda boda is zooming by? Why yes, but did I manage to drive successfully without as many nerves? Yes.  Thanks MDC for the encouragement 16 January 2013
  • *My zebra snuggie (Hob) made it to Uganda.  Now I don’t really need it tonight but when the rain comes, oh how nice it will be to snuggle up in my snuggie. 15 January 2013
  • *Three blind mice, see how they run.  I don’t know how blind they are but I surely ran when I saw three mice over three days.  Eeeks and squeals from me. 12-14 January 2013
  • * I learned to mix cement, so that I could help reinstall a door that the last tenant removed before he finally vacated.  One of the things that interest me was the pure determination to remove every single item he believed to be his, including wanting the bricks from the current latrine and trying to dig up a huge matokee tree (pic of just the trunk below).  Dude, seriously? And yes we did have a conversation because I’d had enough 11 January 2013.

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  • *My downloaded Insanity workout didn’t manage to come with sound on all of the workouts, which means some of my counts are just a touch faster than Shawn T’s.  10 January 2013
  • *My friend scored tickets to The Ultimate Prom, i.e. an Inaugural Ball.   His date has said no Flat Angela but hopefully Flat Angela will find an in and crashes a ball, in a classy way of course. Good Ball look below-fingers crossed that I get a snap with the president.  So excited for D Cook 2-he’s blogging about the experience at www.gregorydonald.weeby.com

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9 January 2013

  • *I believe some mosquitos planned a huge family reunion at our place.  This week those guys have tripled and I’ve seen and killed more in my mosquito net than outside the net. 8 January 2013
  • Things I never thought I would say about work. “Me and this hen are going to have it out.  Can the owners please keep the hen out of my school and out of my office? One of us has to go. If not I guess I will just keep the eggs.”  There are hens, rosters, and chickens at the school, they belong to the neighbors that have been moving since Nov 30.  My issue with the animals is –urg we don’t need them at the school unless they are providing food and they are not staff or students so why do they feel the need to jump through the windows or walk through the doors, straight back to the office, where the hen has become found of laying eggs and freaking me out, so I don’t want to be in the office. Yep 9  January 2013
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  • *We (the taxi) hit a cow this morning on the way to work.  The driver hit the brakes (that didn’t do such a great job of stopping on the post rain road) and we swerved so we only hit one cow versus the entire herd that was taking a morning walk across Ggaba Rd-a pretty major road in the area. 8 January 2013

*I always find it interesting to see different areas of any city.  One of my favorite stores is TJMaxx.  The nicer the selections of discounted brand named goods depends on the income base of the area the store is located in.  The same goes for my second favorite places-The Goodwill and consignment stores, the same goes for Shoprite grocery stores in Uganda.  The store at the Luggo Mall that is located where numerous Internationals folks live has brighter lighting, a cleaner appearance, and wider aisles.  The store closer to the taxi park and the area where paler faces are more scarce, is dim, congested, full of action outside the doors with folks trying to hustle all types of goods.  Something’s just come with the territory.  5 January 2013

*I was asked to help with the 8am Sunday School class/Children’s church.  Thankfully today there were only 22 children because many people are still in the village on holiday.  I was not so thankful with the main teacher showing up 50 minutes late and telling me that she saw me pass by her house on my way and she knew she would be late.  We’ll see how next Sunday goes.  30 December 2012

 

*We stayed at a hostel, which was fine, but thankfully one of my roommates had looked things up online so we weren’t disappointed when drove up to a beautiful lodge to find our hostel snuggled behind the beauty. Lol 27 December 2012

 

*The food selection was pretty limited at the hostile but they did have potatoes and we had them in every form offer-boiled, fried, mashed, and as chips/fries. For me the mashed came in 1st place. 27 December 2012

*I was greeted by one of the women at church who asked me to help with Children’s Sunday School.  When I said I would pray about it, she handed me the lesson book, gave me her number, and said who no, we shall talk on Sunday.  Hmmm I guess I better pray and read and see if this is something for me. 23 December 2012

 

*I love the dentist and I got to take one of the boys in for an appointment.  The appointment highlights included:

  • A brushing tutorial for Richard, which I later shared with all the boys at the house
  • an invitation from the dentist to come behind the chair to get an up close view of the problems
  • seeing x-rays and me being able to point out the problem cavity areas.  Yep, time at ETSU with a dental hygienist in training and then my time with Dr. Wilson and Swift Creek Dental-I’ve learned a thing or two about teeth and teeth x-rays
  • the wait to be fit in for the days schedule was only about an hour and a half versus the entire day
  • knowing the cost and materials used for a root canal and 4 crowns-not really a highlight but I was knowledgeable- 18 December 2012

 

 

*I went to a Ugandan Comedy show and although a number of jokes fell flat there was still plenty of comedy from the 5 guy band with shiny matching vest but no other clothing coordinated pieces for the group, the host who desperately tried to pick up one of the ladies in our group by calling out the American table and giving a few free tickets to our table for a fashion convict party (required attire-as many different colors as possible in one outfit), the majority male audience having a dance marathon after the comedians finished, and of course the featured musician whose skinny jeans were too big but he yet had one pants leg up to reveal a thin chicken leg.  Best joke of the night: If you watch The Titanic in reverse, it’s a great movie about a large boat that rises from the water to save people. 17 December 2012

 

*Random terms and things- Tooth Mouse- “you’ve been lost”-Ice cream man

So instead of a Tooth Fairy-Uganda has a tooth Mouse.  When you lose a tooth the mouse brings money to go under your pillow for the tooth.  Ugandan think our Fairy is whack but I know, many of folks, myself included, who would have never put a tooth under a pillow for a mouse to vist.-NO Way.  One lady said, when you get older you realize your mom is The Rat.

 

You’ve been lost.  The first time I heard this I just looked strange until the words ‘long time ’were added to the phrase.  Long-time you’ve been lost might be said in the states as- I haven’t seen you in a while.

 

I can hopefully get a picture of the Ice Cream Man really soon.  Here he doesn’t have a truck but a bicycle with an round, orange Rubbermaid cooler with the white lids rubber banded to the back of the bike, and a bullhorn that plays Christmas music (even in July) attached to the front of the bike. And yes, I sure have gotten the mango flavored treat from the back of the bike.

 

*Causing the wooden boat to lean just a little to the right as I try to take a front facing pic of me and the random little boy next to me on the 7 passenger ‘vessel.’  Of course the boat dude-do you call the guy in the back with a wooden oar The Captain?  Well whatever he’s called, he was calling for me to be still in the boat, which was probably a good idea, since I surely can’t swim.  Sidebar random to my random-what suggestions do folks have for getting pics off my phone when I believe there might be a touch of water damage where I would normally plug in the cord-brgg-brgg-brg 16 December 2012

 

*Having one of my friends think that the grasshopper gift was part of the white elephant gag gift section-nope, not so, that was the real deal Merry Christmas from the heart hoppers there.  So let me just give you a quick infomercial on the grasshoppers.  There’s a place in the city that has all these silver pieces of roofing sheet metal standing vertically white giant spotlights shining on the metal.  The ladies from the Women’s retreat explained that the light attacks the grasshopper and they come and hit the metal falling down into these holes where they are trapped, collected, and sold for consumption-hmmm.  And as I write why is there a GIANT grasshopper banging into my mosquito net, could he be here to question me about what happened to his cousins on this past Thursday? Yipes! 16 December 2012

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*We will thankfully, and by faith, be able to give raises to the school staff for next year.  Everyone was happy, yet many still asked if there would be additional allowances for transportation and housing.  It’s striking to me every time I’m asked this question and yes I give this general reply each time. “When your salary is given, you know your expenses, and you have to make sure that you can manage.  You should not expect a salary and additional transport, if those things aren’t listed as benefits.  When gas went into the upper $4 range, I had to figure out the best way to work my schedule and the need for premium petrol in my gas tank and that sometimes meant not going to the store for all the little things.” 11 December 2012

*Do Americans repeat the same statement and requests multiple times for everything?  I can’t seem to remember clearly but I do know for certain that many of my staff are going to tell me that even after an increase the salary should still be more, and the lunch menu should change, and that red ink pens, and manillas (poster board) are needed for next term.  Oh did I forget to say that I will be told this at least 3 times within an hour. Yep, I have said twice is a plenty good. LOL. 12 December 2012

*Some days you just need a distinguished look in one of the nicer, high end restaurants in Uganda.  Mustaches will never be the same for the wait staff. And a few school  girls needed to be distinguished as well. 7 December 2012

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*Connecting with some of the teachers through pictures.  They said that I look so happy in America because I have a big smile in all my pictures, along with “dressing very well.”  Thankfully I was able to explain and show that most Americans look happy in pictures because everyone actually SMILES for the camera versus the Uganda picture face. 6 December 2012

*Just in case you didn’t know ladies, please be on notice that touching your belt buckle while talking with others, especially men, is seen as suggestive.  Who knew, I just thought my belt adjustment was helping me to avoid my pants from falling down.  Hmmmm, now I wonder which would be worse? 4 December 2012

*Oh how I would like to be a member of the worship night choir but how could I ever learn all the movements and sing continuously for 3 straight hours.  Sean T has nothing on these folks-because it was a true insanity workout for the Lord. 30 November 2012

*There were thousands of people at worship night and to accommodate the masses there were screens giving a wide view of the stage and audience.  Since we were in the front rows of the VIP seating, we just so happened to be in the view of the cameras audience panning.  The first time seeing yourself on two large screens is a bit startling (especially after working all day and forgetting accessories) but then to see yourself on screen with the plaid hat, covered by a jacket hood, and arms folded with your head leaning over almost asleep-eeek.  The added bonus comes when the camera is having a close up of your face responding to the image and people chuckling-not the most stunning to say the least. If only video from my phone would load but i think there’s a little water damage on the connection thingy. 30 November 2012

blog_flats.jpg *All the kids standing around the charcoal stove at school as I cook my version of posha.  The true American way-fried with a batter and ketchup to top things off.  The funny thing is they were all amazed that I was using the stove and they all spoke in Luganda with the occasional “Black American” thrown into the sentences.  Hello-I’m standing right here, I can hear you talking about me.  The even funnier thing today, was hearing that folks from the shop next to the school were also watching to see why ‘you’ were at the charcoal stove. “ We didn’t know if they were teaching you or you teaching them.”  I explained to all that no, I don’t cook on a charcoal stove in the US but I do know how to cook.  22 November 2012.

blog_flats.jpg  *Our largest class is Nursery and several of the Nursery students are staff member’s children, so it’s not uncommon to find that sometime during the day, a baby will be bathed in a basin right outside the doors of the school.  This week has been no exception, only that I have pictures to prove that simultaneously as I sit on the porch with two girls who were fighting over who mimicked me the best, there were also kids playing, babies crying, and yes kids bathing.  Just another day at DOORS Primary. 22 November 2012

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*Sunny weather every day makes it hard for me to believe it’s Thanksgiving time or that Black Friday is just days away.  Without the Pilgrims, Food Lion ‘get your free turkey commercials, nor the annual RCL basket collection to donate Thanksgiving dinner to a local family through Pi Mu Alpha dudes I’m still living life as August.  But I’m confident that at least 1 or 2 of my friends will stuff themselves with a helping of food for more and more importantly that they will scan the Black Friday ads and maybe add me to their list of ‘ahh, great deal let me get one for myself and one to send to Uganda’ and just let me know, I will gladly forward the Black Friday emails I’ve been receiving since last month and I can even mark an item or two. J 20 November 2012

* Ugandans like to dance and no matter if it’s in church or at the Christmas program to Jesus on the cross, in the manager, or Santa Claus or Father Time, if there’s a beat there will probably be full hips and shoulders shakin’ and movin’. 17 November 2012

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*YAY for Ugandan honesty as the tailor told me today “You’ve put on some weight, I can tell,  but it’s good because it goes with your frame and we don’t want your family saying Uganda has stressed you out too much or been bad on you.”  This of course was said as she took me around to look for fish with a tomato/onion sauce. 14 November 2012

A first for me not to be posed out but I think I still look like I’m maintaining my decreased size?

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*Dude at the end of our drive.  Since there isn’t an indoor restroom at the bar, which happens to be at the end of our drive, you will often see men at the brushes-just peeing as we walk by, no shame or anything.  Well tonight as I guy his peeing, he also tried to holla at me with a ‘hey.’  My reply-“are you seriously trying to talk to me as you pee?  That is just NASTY!!!”  top with the AMJ disgusted face and head shake. 12 November 2012

*Handing out a writing assignment to one of the teachers for homework.  Dude, do you really think I can read this stuff, written in all red ink?  Back to basics you go.  I’ll be sending this exercise to a few of my former staff members as well, you know who you are-MWS (sauce) and JC. LoL. 12 November 2012

*The British doctor claiming to know my nationality based on the fact that I said I take daily multi-vitamins. “You’re American because you all take multi-vitamins for no reason at all.”  Why thanks, I actually take them because I doubt that my diet is fulfilling all my vitamin needs and my doctor in America told me to, with your heavy, hard to understand accent. 5 November 2012

*Never thought my most earnest prayer request for the day would be that the bodaman get me home as fast as possible, missing all pot holes; 2 bottles of water and a soda all within an hour before a 2 hour bus ride, along with an upset stomach-not a good idea. I even changed the words of a few hymns to make sure my request was heard.  The singing meant that I had no idea what the bodaman said when the boda tire ran into the bumper of a taxi.  I’m sure he must have said are you all right? Should we keep going? And my signing must have said yes bump and pass the taxi… And don’t fret I don’t have malaria or other things-just a bad, not-so-smart decision of using old mayonnaise on my sandwich. LOL 1 November 2012

*Best suggestion for feeling better-Why don’t you run around your room and jump up and down. It will help. Lol 31 October 2012

*Sister’s are doing it for themselves-or the country.  It’s not uncommon to see the majority of the city/public works staff being women. 30 October 2012

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*Open Market day in the slums. Shoes, Victoria Secret-almost? Repurposed goods (fan cover as a drainer) 30 October 2012

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*Neighborhood where some of the kids live. And yes I squealed as I jumped across the dirty water, almost falling. 30 October 2012

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*BUSTED-this is how when looks when the Administrators finds them on the street when they are supposed to be at school.  When she saw me coming she put both hands to shield her face, as if her tiny hands would keep me from seeing her. 30 October 2012

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*I know that folks like to spice up their hair styles with different twists and turns of uniqueness and maybe even a highlight or two if you’re feeling fresh but I’m not sure when ROY G BIV (rainbow colors) became the common choice for wedding accents, grandmothers, and all those in between.  I think I will start a people watching album on facebook. 28 October 2012

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*Grasshoppers, grasshoppers please stop looking at me as I eat you in all your fried splendor.  Yep, grasshoppers are a November/December delicacy that women are supposed to enjoy.  Who knew a Sunday wrestling match would have grasshopper vendors. YAY me :/  So Mallory thinks they taste like popcorn and I think I couldn’t get past their tiny eyes looking at me 28 October 2012

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*Oh the things you don’t expect from AMJ- attendance at an African wrestling event.  Not really my thing after the first 15 minutes but after the wrestling there were music performers and GREAT people watching.  Some of the American influenced styles gone wrong both in Uganda and in the states and then other ‘fashions’ purely a MESS and a Miss.28 October 28, 2012

*Not really sure what area to put this one in so random it goes.  Keeping my mouth shut and just pointing so that Ugandans can negotiate prices prior to folks jacking up the price when they realize I’m American.  28 October 2012

*I’ve mentioned the Ugandan stare before.  On Saturday I had several stares but the one that struck me was a bridesmaid who gave me ‘the stare’ and I looked back at her, just because I’ve started to, and then with great pause she gives almost an attitudinal head nod and a sharp ‘Smart,’ which means you look nice.

 

*As much as I love desserts, I did not have a single piece of cake at the wedding.  I did try one of the icing flowers that came off during transport and yikes on the eeek different sugar taste.  My American friends have told me cakes here taste like Styrofoam, so I’m thinking it may have been an o.k. miss. 27 October 2012

*Not my brightest move-Walking through the slums in the rain for home visits with shoes that take a minimum of 3 minutes to lace up my leg.  The complication happens when you face the custom of removing your shoes before entering a home.   Shoe pictures to follow at a later date. 17 October 2012

*Asking the bride and a few other wedding committee members to not give my name to the bridesmaids after I tell them “NO dear hearts, we cannot do the wedding training now because you are two hours late.  You’ll need to make some sacrifices, suck it up, and do what the bride and groom tell you-that’s just part of being in a wedding.” 15 October 2012

*Learning new things each time with the wedding committee.  Two Wedding trainings are required prior to the couple getting married.  At least one of the wedding trainings requires that every member of the wedding party be there in order for the couple to get the marriage documents signed. 15 October 2012

*More Funny phrases:

•     I’m not sure or what is your program = what does your schedule or what do your plans look like?

  • Can we make a time table for that? Can we have a schedule.

 

•     Shall we move?  = Can we go/keep walking?

•     She/he won’t pick or is not picking, i.e. they are not answering the phone.

•     Can you cook? Ugandan,  traditional? Can you cook for me?  Three questions often asked of me by men here.  I can cook but dude I don’t find it a great pick up line to be invited to cook for you.

•     Staff meeting low/prayers “We still don’t have a punching machine.”  As a kind Administrator, I purchased a hole punch this weekend, so hopefully there is a high/praise for the hole punch.

 

*The taxi driver almost took out a bicycle rider and boda man as he drove with the turns and ‘grace’ of a NASCAR driver.  You know its bad when all the passengers start to eeeekk and chatter as we look back to make sure the bicycle guy didn’t fully hit the ground as he made a turn that tilted his bike to the ground to avoid the bike to taxi door collision. 7 October 2012

*Learning to be content (well as much as possible)  and enjoying the moment with plans being completely thrown off the time table. 7 October 2012

*Giving greetings at chapel to the 400+ boarding school kids.  Although I didn’t say that I was from America, I think the response of everyone laughing when I spoke, meant they were aware of my ‘interesting’ accent, at least that’s what the boys and uncle said. 7 October 2012

*Being complemented for my ‘beauty’ and my “energy in walking.”  I’ve surely been told in the past that I walk at a fast pace but it’s never been noted as something that’s attractive.  This only adds to the joy of the conversation that included being asked “can I pick out my cough medicine”, as well as fix me lunch, and an invitation to the beach, all in a day’s walk from town.   LOL 6 October 2012

*Having a mom openly express that she wants her kids to have an education greater than her 3rd grade education, that she wants them to be able to get the jobs that she cannot get due to her inability to speak English, that she wants them to bathe daily (and with me to follow up by asking if they have bathed), that, and that although she is still young enough to get married, she can’t because she is embarrassed and ashamed of their behavior and disrespect. 3 October 3, 2012

*Bridesmaid drama is universal but having a bridesmaid say “we already picked out the fashion, tailor, purchased the fabric and shoes, so we could surprise the bride” now that was a new one and of course I surely stated your bride is very nice because you should really be doing what she tells you to do. 23 September 2012

*Cats insisting on bothering you and walking on you after repeatedly telling them “I do NOT like cats-seriously” so yes I guess you should walk and laid down on me. EEEEKKKKKK 23 September 2012

*More direct comments that would not be said in the states, especially at an open parent’s meeting.  Having the teachers ‘dedicate’ certain comments to children’s parents: “Angela always sleeps in class or is hiding under the desk to take a nap.”

“If the parents don’t go to bed until midnight and you let your kids stay up until midnight, how do you expect them to stay awake in school and learn?”

“Your kids should be clean and you should give them nickers (I think underwear.) 22 September 2012

* In simple Awe that with a wedding date of 27 October the bride seems relatively calm as the bridesmaid’s “fashion” was just confirmed this weekend although the exact fabric colors aren’t nailed down,  with the reception venue being confirmed this week, donations and support yet in the works to cover the budget, and the Black American filling in for the absent Chairman and running the committee meeting.   Another example of people trusting and believing the Lord will provide.  16-September 12

*Interesting business names:

  • Eat.com 24/7
  • Bar Restaurant Carwash (for all those times that I’ve wished for a Shirley Temple, a good meal, and of course a fresh and clean car)
  • DIVE INN
  • Super Supermarket
  • Praise Supermarket
  • Cinderella Supermarket

Surely the list will grow over the year. 16-September-2012

*Thursday’s are always a great day because it’s American night for dinner.  This week after DOORS Ministry meeting, Mallory and I discussed having pulled pork bbq, cole slaw, and chips (potato-not fries as they are called chips here.)  I was so excited because I just learned some special bbq cooking tips from my aunt just before I left.  I also knew she could verify the things that I had on the list to make cole slaw, even if it meant sharing her secret slaw dressing recipe –I mean who am I going to tell in Africa. Because I’m respectful, I didn’t call at 3am, when the idea was being discussed but I waited until a reasonable hour, which happened to be 7:45am-in the states.  Whoops, so I guess she wasn’t up being that she said she would like to knock me in the head with the phone for calling in the morning about cole slaw.  If only I could have put the big bunned (ground vs pulled pork) bbq sandwich down to take a pic of our awesome dinner.  Yummy-I was wishing for delicious left overs as I sat and waited for my 3:47pm Friday lunch.  YAY for acquiring skills through family observation, years of time around great cooks taught me a thing or two to use in Africa.

Please know that my life here does include other things besides foos, although I feel that’s all I ever talk about.  I guess you can decrease of slim a chunky girl but her heart will always be with her first loves. lol

*”Contributions.” When asked for comments or suggestions the staff will take time to think and just as we’re about to move on or have moved on, folks raise their hands to give ‘contributions’ i.e. suggestions, comments-some days it’s a funny similarity to my old RCL staff meetings and the ‘around the table.’ 7-September-2012

*I do not care for snotty nose and boogers freak me out a bit but today I had to break down and just had a snot line as the kids returned to class from their morning break.  Roll of toilet paper in hand, I checked and wiped noses.  The funny thing is every kid wanted to get their nose wiped. Tip to remember-gloves or bigger pieces of toilet paper-eekk  7-September-2012

*As I was waiting to get on a taxi there was an exchange between the conductor and an Ethiopian woman.  The exchange was of course based around the price of the taxi ride and there was a little arguing and raised voices that came along with the exchange.  The moment when I decided to go to another taxi line is when the lady snapped her neck and started yelling “you don’t know me”, which was proceeded by arms in the air and the conductor swinging his hand in the woman’s face.  Hmmm-yea, I can wait this time. 07-September 2012

*Most people lock their front door with a padlock.  Man do I see Safety Inspectors having increased heart beats right now. 07-September 2012

*I fetched water at the school. A jerri-can full of water is HEAVY.  I will need to acquire the skill of head transport J  On this same day I helped mix the posho, well at least long enough to take a pic because it’s hard work mixing this big pot.  Posho is similar to a finer grain of grits that’s been reheated without cheese nor butter, milk, and sugar.  I did however taste some fried posho on day and I think with some Heinz ketchup posho could sub for friend potatoes.  06-September 2012  there’s a pic in this link http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10151170959870280.492412.539395279&type=3

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*Ugandan blah, blah, blah equivalent filler words, “what, what.” 3-Sep-12

 

*Angelaisms adjusting to the bluntness that’s used here and just coming into her own (I know some of you are thinking, when was Angela not direct and blunt? But seriously, it’s so different-just in the fact that people don’t try to place soft edges around their words.)

Statements to me:

  • “Give me some coins so I can go to the doctor”  “I’ll take paper if you don’t have coins.”  Angela refrained from saying “do I look like yo momma?”  Now the Angela soft edges would say “wouldn’t youlike to help me in feeling better by giving ne a few coins to go to the doctor?”
  • “We don’t want to have the same menu every day, just give the cooks the money and let them come up with different stuff.”  I completely understand and also love some variety but  1. I know the budget and how the menu best maximizes the budget 2. Just two weeks ago the cooks were given the money and added variety to which the statements were “the cooks are changing the menu and we don’t like what they’re fixing.”  The Angela reply that you would expect (especially if you’ve known me for some time) “this is not a restaurant and although you don’t know what Burger King is, you don’t get to have it your way here”  After having the lunch menu conversation almost every week since I’ve been here, my response today was “I appreciate that you are consistent and you never fail me on complaining about the menu.  I will not be offended in the least if you start bringing your own lunches.”   I know keep my mouth in your prayers.  3-Sept 2012

 

*I’ve been assigned an additional job on the wedding committee of Ringto and Gracious (love the names.) I am not only the time keeper but now the secretary.  I think I mentioned in a previous post that a big part of the wedding committee is to help fund raise for the couple’s wedding, so I threw out an idea or two and now I too will become comfortable in asking in the more direct way for money. I know, I know many of you are saying this is a skill set you’re oh so familiar with already. LoL 3-Sep-12

+Of course, everyone wants a new first day of school outfit-even the Administrator, and having the option of going to the tailor is awesome.  Key point to remember when visiting the tailors 1. They often have newspaper sized pages with outfits to choose from (almost like looking at the old-school pattern books with my mom on the top floor of Leggett’s Department store-a time when I wasn’t being accussed of slimming but more ‘chunking and less portable’-lol 2.-the tailor can make the outfit-exactly like your drawing, even if that means a little more Flinestone than African fab.  I’ll cheek with Betty and Wilma to borrow their rock necklaces or I’ll be going back for some professional advice on drawing alteration adjustments.  3. The tailor does not have a fitting room area other than the glass counter between the street vendors and her sewing room floor-so trying tops on is creative and you could possibly have more than your skirt fall down when she’s pulling you into the new skirt.

Plus side-1. I had two drawing and one is way African, AMJ creations nice, even if I don’t have my yellow Poetic License heels with the brown satin laces to make the perfect outfit pop of color hotness. Plus-side 2.  Rehima, the tailor, has dreads and gave me her locktians contact info. Jeff uses the hock method to lock and because it’s Africa, I can negotiate on the price. Ya buddy (especially since my do-it-yourself hair clips were one of the things that was removed from my luggage due to excessive weight…and the Lord provides hair styling negotiation-lol.) 30-August-12

-Folded bills-they can get you everywhere in Uganda. Information from a school on their operations, a police check point pass when your vehicle registration is not in the taxi, just to name a few.  So now I feel that there are many people that I may need to touch base with and ask for my folded bills please :) 28-August-2012

 

+Ugandan’s stare. Not the discrete side glance but full on, dead in your eye balls, look you up and down staring.  I asked one of the uncle’s to watch the eyes of his fellow countrymen. It is typically more hard core with the men but the women stare as well.  Just to keep things interesting I now don’t look down or away and today I even gave the over the shoulder back at you too stare. 26-Aug-12

+Having chicken for dinner is not a drive to KFC but picking  your lively bird, chopping the head, dipping in boiling water, and then de-feathering-eeeekkkkkk 26-Aug-12

 

+Cows walking down the middle of the road followed by a young man and a Four Runner.  Couldn’t pull my phone out fast enough to take a pic.24-Aug-12

)I know that breast feeding is just a natural part of life and things around the globe but I have seen more breast whipped out at the school, church, on the taxi, or just sitting have general conversation at someone’s house-the little modesty blankets to cover feeding time is not a part of Ugandan living-not even at church.  The upside-baby’s don’t cry for an extended time because they just turn their head and the food is there. 22-Aug-12

 

+Working from the home office today.  My office is located right across from my bed and in between the accessories and skirt/pant shelf and the dress and pj’s shelf. Great example of maximizing space- thanks HGTV.  Now to find a new office chair instead of my tempoary stool and pillow.  Can I build one-hmm. 21-Aug-12

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+Sometimes there are chickens in my kitchen, not in the pot, not bbq’ed just randomly walking in to check things out.  Other days there are chickens fighting the cats-now that’s a noise. 20 -Aug-12

+More interview randomness; having applicants bring their application and just hanging out to wait to have an interview that same day. No interview time, no confirmation other than a word of mouth need, no itenenary. Four people were waiting when I arrived late but none on the days I was early or on time. 17-August-12

+Low maintenance pet or snack food? hmmm. The other day I was offered a snack during break time at school, something I knew but not in the form of snack foods.  There was a bowl of silver fish, yep like the one’s you buy at Wal-mart as a cheap, low committment pet for your kids.  Yep those same ones nice and crispy, heads and all.  I tried it but I’ll stick with the ones in the fish bowl versus soup bowl.  So today, when the silver fish were part of the soup, although there were several in my bowl, I explained that I could not eat the American pets. As I described my relationship to silver fish, I was given the common head tilt and a hmmm.  I will try to add pictures of my dish of fish :)

The greater piece of randomness to the story is just a childhood memeory of my father tyring to give mouth-to-fish breathe to revive some frozen pet fish. Our neighbors asked me to feed their fish over the holiday and the temps dropped so low that the fish bowl water froze.  I will never forget my dad placing the fish in the bath tube to de-ice them and because my dad was an AWESOME dad we only lost 1 or 2.  Boy do I miss that dude, he would have been 81 just this 11-Aug, so thankful that I had a GREAT dad who not only role modeled a real man in our home but took on the father role for many kids in our community.  He would love “these rascals” here. 13-Aug-12

+African frankness will happen in an Interview.  If you don’t bring your CV to the interview you could be asked “don’t you think that was something important to have during this time right now?”  If you’re not answering the question asked, you could be stopped midsentence with a hand and a “No, that is not the answer.”  And when you are given the moment to ask questions of the panel, make sure the questions relate to the interview because you could get cut off with “don’t ask questions about other things.” I know the only reason I didn’t laugh during most of the statements was due to the fact that i was trying to write them down to remember for the blog.  The best line of the day was, “if you are having trobule understanding English, that might be your weakness area that you should work on.” 13-Aug-12

-make sure you bring your CV to the interview

+ Oh how I love an analogy.  The first one given to me in Africa; A good teacher is prepared and focused like a prostitute or harlot.   A harlot prepares herself before she leaves home and she knows what her target is.  “Do you have those in America?”  My response “oh you mean a hooker; yes we do although I don’t think I would have connected that analogy but o.k.” 12- Aug 12

 

+ We have a copy of Insanity, so Shawn and I are still connected.  Yesterday-Pure Cardio in Uganda.   Besides not working out for the past three weeks, it’s a bit challenging to workout in my mission shoes.  Sneakers are something I thought I could get mailed. 12-Aug 12
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I love slurpees.  Please note 7-eleven was the originator of the Slurpee.  All other places are an imitation but may have to do in a pinch.  My favorite flavors are coke and peach mango layered but a good grape/coke or cherry/coke works as well.  The special trick is titling the cup so that you get a layer and not mixed.  I know, I know-special.

Just in case you were wondering “we do not eat our food (fresh hot french fries from the STREET vendor) walking on the street.  You may eat snacks (fresh cut pineapple) but not food.”  So just a heads up when you come to visit. 4-August 12

So glad that I brought my daily shoe calendar along for the trip.  Even if I don’t wear heels everday, I have some to view.  Plus one of the Chicago girls loves shoes too :) 2-August 12

Learning to write the dates in the African way day-month-year. 8-10-12 my birthday but I’ll be pleased with birthday wishes and surprises if you misread the day for august 10 or correctly at October 8. Tehehe 2-August-12

I have a thing for shoes; Mostly heels and wedges, flats-not so much.  Please note flip-flops are not shoes and white shoes-urgg- they hurt my feelings, especially if they are not clean.

 

Desserts are the first thing that I look at on a menu-gotta know how much space to leave.

 

A good watermelon makes me smile and YAY watermelon and pineapple are great fruits in Uganda.

 

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I enjoy crafting.  It is one of the few times when I am quite.  Crafts require focus not conversation.  I can’t wait to begin making paper-bead necklaces with the kids.  Hopefully in time, mine can be just as lovely as the one’s they’ve made.

 

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I’m a PK (preacher’s kid.)  My parents founded our church in Lexington, VA.  New Hope Church of God In Christ.  Stop by if you’re ever in town, my parents have passed away but their warm and welcoming spirit still remains.  It’s the little brick church below the Nelson St. bridge.  112 Varner Lane-Lexington, VA 24450-540-463-6339

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