Well, it’s been incredibly hectic the past several days. Terra had a friend come for her R&R for a long weekend. Juliet is based in Somaliland, which internally functions as a country but is not recognized as one by the international community who view it as an autonomous region of Somalia. Given the security situation in most of Somalia, UN workers like Juliet have to operate under some pretty stringent restrictions, giving rise to the need for frequent R&R breaks. With her visit, we did a fair amount of shopping (those who know me know how high this generally ranks in my list of pastimes, but I did manage to get gifts for folks). We also ate Chinese, Mexican and Indian food, all of which was good (for the most part – I’ll get to that next). I still haven’t had Ugandan food yet, as we’ve been eating sandwiches, fish and chips, pasta, fried chicken, and the cuisines mentioned above. Terra has promised to get me some real Ugandan food this coming week.
As was bound to happen eventually, I finally came down with what I will euphemistically refer to as “travelers’ digestion”. I think it was something in the Indian food that didn’t agree with me, although, given all my travels to India, I would have thought that should be fine. As Terra and Juliet and I shared all the dishes, I can’t even blame the food. So, rather than leaving for our trip to the northern part of Uganda on Monday as planned, we had to wait until Tuesday. I slept until 2pm on Monday, ate the Ugandan version of Raman noodles with some leftover bok choy from the Chinese dinner on Friday and all was right with the world.
I must say that, although I was expecting some intestinal distress, the botfly was a surprise. Also called the mango fly here, this little creature lays eggs on laundry and if you do not thoroughly iron your clothing after drying it outside or at least let it sit for a few days, these eggs implant themselves beneath the skin and gestate new flies, which then do bad things that I would rather not contemplate. For those interested in videos, googling “botfly Uganda ironing” will bring up some videos. I have not looked at any, figuring it was safer to wait until I am far away from these creatures. Fortunately, most furnished apartments here come with laundry and ironing services, so I should hopefully continue to avoid experiencing this malady first hand. I did so hope it was exhaustion, jet lag and perhaps even hallucination when I first remembered Terra mentioning this. Alas, I was not so lucky, so it is ironed clothes for me! Wearing ironed blue jeans takes some getting used to.
Coming up next, posts on my tour of Northern Uganda and some thoughts arising out of that experience, and an experience it truly was.