Wednesday, 23 September 2009

Zen and the art of motorcycle maintenance... or bodaism and how it misaligned my chakras

Oh yes, there is a revolving restaurant in Kampala! So last Thursday Elizabeth, Pete and I decided that for kicks and giggles it was a must visit... Apparently it's only one of three revolving restaurants in Africa. Personally I don't understand why every town doesn't have one. Got some excellent views over the (pitch black) golf course. Actually we got some good views of the 7 hills of Kampala, and the food wasn't bad at all. 10 out of 10 for novelty value I say!

So what else have I been up to this week... Well all seems to have calmed down on the political front for now, although I'm not sure how long that will last for, and will be keeping my ear to the ground - my nose is fairly useless for this kind of thing, being anosmic and all.

I spent some time in theatre last week learning a little bit about how things get done here, how to book cases and so on. I spent the day wearing two right footed surgical wellies, one size 9 and one size 11. It was a special look and one I shall spend the rest of the year trying to perfect. If anyone wants to send me a pair of wellies the next time people come to Kampala, I'd appreciate it, size 5, the louder the better!

Saturday was spent visiting the black and white colobus monkeys in Entebbe Botanical gardens and generally kicking back away from Kampala. Sunday was spent visiting Owino market where you can buy ANYTHING you need. You can get adapter plugs from egg shops, mops from shoe shops and oven gloves from the shoe shine man. Immense. We then had a house barbecue which was really nice, met some mangey puppies and generally had a fun and frivolous time. Monday was spent going up and down Kampala Road trying to sort out my visa...

I went to collect my passport to check it wasn't missing, was told that yes, I could have a special pass and to speak to the cashier. You would think that a cashier is someone who takes cash from you, but oh no... the cashier tells you how much it is, gives you an invoice and sends you to the bank... three miles away. At the bank, you queue - and if you're me discover that you spent 20 minutes waiting in the wrong place - and eventually pay the fee. You need a receipt, which you can't pick up FOR AT LEAST TWO HOURS. So I smiled and nodded, ran a few more errands - booked gorilla tracking permits YAY! - and went back around 4, waited for another half an hour in a queue got my receipt and decided that I couldn't bear to go back again.

Tuesday was spent back at the passport office, where I was told that I have to go back again to pick it up today. I'll go when I have sorted the rest of my paperwork and there is not a document that they could possibly ask me for that I don't have - ahem.

Today, we presented our Malaria in pregnancy guideline. I've made flowcharts for the others we've produced and I need to get them printed as A2 posters. This is prohibitively expensive in Kampala. If anyone at home knows of somewhere they can be printed relatively cheaply, I'd appreciate it if you could get in touch. We're going to need at least 5 of each poster and potentially we could be looking at 100 posters in total once all of the guidelines are written. I can arrange for them to be brought out to Kampala from the UK by hand so that's not an issue.

I'm restarting the midwife teaching sessions tomorrow, and I'm surprisingly nervous about how it will go down. One of the midwives has asked specifically for a problem based learning approach! I knew PBL would take over the world eventually!

Had my first Luganda lesson last night, and it will come as no shock to most people that I'm crap at Luganda....

Wasuze Ottya Nnyabo... How are you madam?
Sula Bulunge... Goodnight
Embwa si nungi... the dog is not fine (no it's not it's still being a menace)

And what else has happened? Ah yes, it's been a week of Boda Boda dramas... Almost fell off a boda on Monday going to meet a friend who I used to play rugby at med school with, then yesterday, we followed some kind of presidential convoy on the boda which meant we got through the jam without any dramas, but then the boda guy drove straight into the side of a cyclist, who retaliated to being driven into by poking the boda guy in the arm. The boda guy tried to justify what had happened, even though before the impact I was screaming Ssebo at him like a woman possessed to warn him, denying blame, and then just drove away! Today, I saw a guy leaving the hospital with a coffin balanced sideways on the back of his motorbike. Wonders never cease.

Anyway, back to the grind... got a section proforma to produce and another guideline to write and I want to get them finished this afternoon... Stay in touch people, missing you guys and all the gossip!

1 comment:

  1. Hi Kate, can just imagine you in the wellies!I can't believe you got sunburnt after all we said, was it a Wimbledon type s/burn. Finding the blog v. interesting,I talk with CVW for the rest. tried so many times to email to no avail (techno phobe) Thinking of you often xx


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