Thursday, June 11, 2009

"Make Your Last Calls and Say Your Last Prayers"

Dora (the explorer) kindly repeated over and over as we drove through the jungle on my first evening in Kyetume. “I'm going to sell you soon, and since you are from America, I'll get twice the price.” Of course she was only pulling my leg, but she told me an interesting story about the village in which the partner cbo we were visiting is located. When she was a little girl, she was told stories about how at 6 p.m. the villagers would turn into monsters that walked on their hands and grabbed you with their feet to eat you. This was only her second time visiting the village, and she said she was actually frightened the first time she had to go hahaha.

I'm really enjoying the culture here, hearing stories like that, exchanging sentiments with my neighbors. The thing that stuck me most about how different this country is from the United States is its sweeping cohesiveness in regards to culture. It's true that the US has more diversity, but this country seems to be united on a higher level. One of my neighbors asked me if the United States has something equivalent to Ugandan clans (which are still honored today), and of course we have nothing that comes close. I guess at first I was surprised by the general uniformity on certain issues like family values or even homosexuality, but it makes more sense to me now.

The people here are so much more welcoming and accommodating than I've been accustomed too, in the US or in India. Despite living without power every other day or so, I'm having a really good time here. I haven't been bored yet! Especially since my 5 year old neighbors like to jam out to T.I. with me while I cook dinner.

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