Last weekend was the first time I went to Jinja and Kampala and did not leave. I travelled with group 1 and Catherine to Jinja sat. morning. We stopped by the craft market briefly and met with with Emmy Jolly’s husband to get some money and then headed to Jinja. We arrived shortly before dinner and enjoyed a delicious veggie burger on the deck overlooking the Nile.
Then the next morning we all got up had breakfast, some bungeed, and most headed to raft. Lisa and Lindsay and I went on the jet boat. Its like a jetski/boat. It works like a jet ski, sucking up water and spitting it out to propel, but it has 8 seats plus the driver. I thought we were going to go down the river but we just pretty much stayed around adrift doing donuts and skimming inches past rocks at 50 miles an hour! It was pretty insane. We went up a few rapids and went airborne. I think it was much scarier than rafting. It was about an hour and then we headed over to meet Catherine by the pool at the hotel next door. It was absolutely lovely.
We made the trek back to Kampala after the last group of bungee jumpers jumped. The normally 1 ½ hour drive took 4 hours because of all the traffic. There are tons of vehicles in the city now for the African Union and tons of security so traffic was insane. We took a vote and decided to go to Lotus, an amazing Mexican restaurant in Kampala and skip the hotel buffet of beans, rice, and chapatti, thank goodness! So we dropped our things at the hotel and went off to dinner. Dinner was delicious! Cindy, the mango margarita was sooo yummy! Fresh mango from Uganda cant be beat!
The hotel we stayed at seemed kind of like a haunted house mixed with the labyrinth. There are so many stair cases and it is so quiet and empty. I learned later from Jolly that her house is actually not far from there and right next door is a member of parliament that she is good friends with. We didn’t really hang out at all once we got to the hotel. The rooms were spread out and only one or two per room so we just got in, cleaned up, and went to bed.
Catherine and I got up around 4:20 to see group 1 off. They were all trudging down the stairs with tired, happy faces as they started off on the last leg of their journey in Uganda. (read Amber’s email post to know more about that). We waved good-bye to them and headed back to our room to catch a few more hours of sleep. We got up around 8, packed our things, and headed down stairs to meet James the driver for our ride to Nakumat. Nakumat is a shopping center in Kampala right beside Garden City where we always go the first day in Kampala to get money and shop. Nakumat is so much better than Uchumi (the grocery store in Garden City). Also in the same shopping center is a restaurant called Café Javas. O my goodness! I can not explain to you how delicious our cinnamon banana pancake and fruit salad for breakfast was. I actually had an awful headache so I fell asleep for an hour and a half and Catherine sat and drank coffee and made lists. She was so good to me and wanted me to feel better before we went shopping. I know you are all amazed that I could fall asleep in such a loud public place…haha.
We left and did some shopping and walking around and then went back to get lunch/dinner before we headed with Andrew (from IC) and Molly (the new intern that had just arrived) back to Gulu.
I have to share what I got. I ordered a tuna fish salad sandwich and it was AMAZING! On whole wheat toasted bread with these delicious masala fries! It was exactly what I needed to get over my headache and get amped up to start my last 2 weeks in Gulu.
Driving back in an IC truch was SO nice compared to a matatoo or (I can imagine) a bus, so that was a plus. The rest of the week was pretty normal. We have had a ton of rain but that African sun dries it up pretty quickly.