season here in Uganda is coming to an end and I am returning to
the UK at the end of this month. It has been a huge honour to
live in Uganda for the past 5 years and to work and have friends
here. I am returning to the UK to be with my family, take my
Masters in Education and update myself in the English National
Curriculum. Bognor will be my home again and I will be
returning to my own house and to my home church. All is ready
and waiting for me and I am busy finishing off loose ends here
is complete for the year and I am busy saying farewell to
friends and colleagues. I have just come back from Kampala
Baptist Church this morning where I was prayed for by the
children and given a farewell party in the Sunday school class.
I was also presented with a wonderful leaving book full of
pictures and thanks from the children I had taught. A wonderful
gift I will treasure for life. I thank God for all of the
friends I made here and all of the amazing experiences I had.
pray for me in this transition time that I may practically and
emotionally be able to transfer quickly and easily back to the
UK. I particularly need pray for the right job to come up at
home. Thank you so much for all your love and support over the
last 5 years. As the African proverb goes – ‘If you want to
walk fast – walk alone. If you want to walk far – walk with
others’. I have walked far and couldn’t have done it without
love and God bless,
January 2011 Dear All,
Well, Christmas and New Year have come and gone like a flash. I
finished the end of term, working to the bitter end to pack in
the curriculum because of the extra long term we were being
subjected to. I think I explained before that our term times
were moved. We started teaching in mid August and finished as
normal just before Christmas. Our Easter term will be normal in
length but then our summer term will be only 7 weeks long. So
we had to pack in almost half the year’s curriculum before
Christmas. This was very exhausting for the teachers and the
children, with no time for the end of term making of Christmas
cards, decorations etc.
however manage to invite the class from out link school to come
and taste the delicious drinks we had designed for them in
Design Technology lessons. We split their one class of about 50+
kids between our two classes, served them up some drinks and
some fun and then evaluated our drinks with their help. A week
or two after our classes made over 200+ drinks which we sold
around our school. The proceeds will go to our link school. We
as yet have not decided how to spend it.
church the children ran a service just before Christmas which I
helped with the practicing for and I believe my Christmas play
was used. We received the banner from the Sunday School in
Bognor and it was put in pride of place in church, central
stage, for all to see. I also received a card which was shared
with the children. Many thanks from myself and the children.
So now I am day dreaming up a reply that I can make with my
Sunday School class in the next month or so to return to Bognor.
The class still needs another teacher to share the work load
Christmas holidays I flew to South Africa for 3 weeks. My
original plan had been to attend Jess and Jason’s wedding.
However their dates did not coincide with my holiday time but I
still decided to go. I flew to Jo’burg and then caught the
Greyhound bus down to Cape Town and then went east along the
Garden Route, the Sunshine Coast and finally to the Wild Coast.
I then took the Greyhound again up to Jo’burg and flew home.
Highlights must have been the fantastically beautiful Cape Town
and going to see Robben Island. Horror tale was being thrown
out a local taxi right in the middle of a township with all my
luggage and handbag on show. A very big sitting target.
But praise God he helped me get out of there quick. It was a
fascinating country which I really enjoyed getting a feel for.
I would gladly return if time and money allows.
have been home a matter of days. As usual, I hit the ground
running with two days (Sat and Sun) to put the house to rights,
replace my flat car battery (harder than you think here), get
food in and plans organised and then straight into school again.
I have another new child who is Danish but can speak no English
and my other new boy, Chinese, who started before Christmas is
an elective mute and is often a real handful to manage.
five and a half weeks of term before we break up for half term.
The reason we break up so early is because it is election time
on Feb 18th and during and after that period there
will be no school. Some parents will leave the country with
their families until it’s over, others will travel away from
Kampala and others will hole up in their homes, keep their heads
low and pray for peace.
visiting me in the middle of this. We are jumping straight in
the car and heading to the South West of Uganda. We shall
return after a week if the coast is clear or we may have to
extend the holiday a little longer if there is unrest.
Prayer points – Peaceful elections
for the sake of the people of Uganda.
A safe visit for Mum.
Help with my Sunday School class.
Peace in surrender to God’s will in my life.
Many thanks for your prayer support, it makes a great
June 2010 Dear All,
Well what’s been
happening to me since Easter? I had a great Easter break going
down to the south west of Uganda. I was greatly privileged to
go gorilla trekking and to also attend one of my fellow
teacher’s wedding to a missionary in Kabale.
Gorilla watching me watching her !
Since then it’s been
back to the hard grind at school. We have just finished giving
and marking our SATs. Unbelievably, it’s back to report writing
again followed by parents' evenings and a huge prize giving for
the end of the year. There is no rest for the wicked until the
very, very end.
Once more I am taking my
class on a series of community development visits to an
organisation called Retrak, they help street boys. It is very
enlightening for my class to see and start to have an
understanding of some of the issues here in Uganda.
one of my class sharing his snack
Meanwhile church has
been busy. I taught March and June and was involved in
entertaining the children at a special church day down by Lake
Please note the parachute
being used was bought and sent over by the children of Opengate,
Bognor. Hannah, it still even has the label on that you wrote.
It was hard work but fun.
I have seen a
few visitors. This is Kate and Peter by Bujagali Falls in Jinja
and Louise Smith, a
friend of mine from Guernsey. Am shortly looking forward to
seeing Pat and Ian Dixon again.
We do not have a half
term holiday this term however we did get two days off. I beat
a hasty retreat to Jinja where I stayed in a peaceful Christian
retreat. I enjoyed this hammock VERY MUCH.
Well, not long until I
return home for a few weeks this summer. I am expecting to have
bad reverse culture shock. It is almost two years since my last
visit. However, I think I will be quickly back into the flow of
things. On my return to Uganda I will be moving year group to
Year 3 and working again with a new teacher.
Seeing you soon,
Well I am
presently in my half term break. The last half term has been
exceptionally busy. At school my class had three new pupils. I
had reports to write and then parent’s evenings. Then of course
there are the parents that don’t come to parents evening which I
had to chase up! Last week I took my Year Group to the Rwenzori
water factory to see how the water was cleaned and we also went
on to the national stadium and had a game of football.
Out of school
we have had Ian and Pat to visit. It was a great pleasure to
see them and I am looking forward to their return to Uganda to
Faith had her graduation
party. I also went to a salsa lesson at her house the other
went on a Saturday exploit to see the famous Shoebill which
involved being punted through the marshes of Lake Victoria for
hours before a short glimpse of the elusive bird. Can you spot
also had a visit from my aunt, uncle and cousin. As it was term
time I sent them off on safari and looked after them on the
weekends either side.
.My youngest cousin,
Anna, also made an appearance in Uganda on a school trip. So I
spent an afternoon/evening with her too.
In church I taught
Sunday School in January and have had February free. I teach
again in March. Most of my old class have moved up, it is so
satisfying seeing them mature in their Christian lives. They
are also growing huge! I now have a new young batch to work
with and it’s great to start to get to know them.
It has alternated
between immense heat and torrential rain here and therefore
between dust and mud. The market by my home is a mud pit and
full of hidden, huge potholes. I also seem to be surrounded by
wildlife. Last week, after the rain, I drove home to find two
enormous snails blocking my road, each one’s shell as big as my
fist. I had to pick them up and throw them out the way rather
than run them over. As I did so I spotted a curious chameleon
watching me from a nearby bush!
SO… as you can see I
have been very busy. I am much looking forward to the Easter
holiday and am making the most of this short break to sort out
jobs such as computer, car, doctor etc.
Thinking of you all
The last few months have
been hectic to say the least. Was pleased to see Steve Jenkins
here in Kampala at the beginning of November. It was great to
spend time with him and catch up with all the news from home.
Term came to a crazy and
stressful end with our Year 5/6 play, Grease, as the climax. It
came together only in the final stages and then became a
resounding success. Never again, I say that each year. The
crowning glory was a quad bike driven on and off the stage
representing the car ‘Greased Lightning’!
Out of school Amigos
opened and it was fun to see the metamorphous of an empty shell
of a room into the now bustling coffee shop.
The Sunday School
nativity was also a hit as the children led the whole service.
(Ian was also preaching that week.) I have had a few weeks off
Sunday School whilst Mum has visited and start again next
Mum came over just
before the end of term and we did some travelling during the
holiday and also just hung out in Kampala. We had a great
Christmas together and had a lot of fun. I had no car as it was
in with the mechanic so Mum was a real trooper travelling
everywhere on local transport, foot, bodda bodda, matatu and big
old buses. A truly Ugandan experience
went to Hoima, took a walk through Budonga Forest, visited
Masindi and the Rhino Sanctuary on our way home. After a few
days in Kampala we ventured out again for three nights to Sipi
Falls in the East of Uganda. Here we ate, rested and took walks
looking at the gorgeous scenery.
We spent a rainy
Christmas Day at Ian’s and did not let the mud deter us from
taking our Christmas Day walk, brandishing umbrellas and wearing
oversized flip flops with our trousers rolled up and mud
splattering up our legs as we failed to avoid the quagmire
surrounding us. I was very sad to take Mum back to the airport
on Boxing Day.
Both Ryan and Graciella
are growing a pace and are healthy and happy. Mum was glad to
meet them both.
With Mum gone I have
succumbed to a stinker of a cold and am struggling with my mid
term plans and starting my reports which are due almost as soon
as I return to school on Jan 4th. Am praying that
the next term is a little calmer and far less stressful.
Meanwhile sending all of
you my love and prayers that you are blessed in the coming
year. How did the last one go so fast?
Many thanks for all your
love and support.
HAPPY NEW YEAR!
Long time since I wrote,
sorry. Had a great summer mostly in Uganda. Had Jonathan,
Laura, Hannah and Amy over and we went camping down in the
southwest corner of Uganda by a beautiful lake called Lake
Also had my cousin
Rachel over for a short time as she researched some material on
child birth in Uganda. She was sponsored by the White Ribbon
Alliance a group trying to encourage governments to invest more
money into hospital maternity wards to avoid much needless loss
Then back to school. I
have a new class and am enjoying getting to know them. They are
a very smart bunch indeed. I have a new TA and both the other
teacher and TA in Year 5 are new so I have a lot of work
familiarising them with the curriculum.
’m just finishing half
term which I have used to catch up on everything and everyone!
Also was silly enough to let myself be scratched by a cat which
looked decidedly ill and am going through a whole series of not
so nice rabies shots. Rather ruined the break but better safe
I continue to work in
the Sunday School at church and am finishing off a series of
studies on prayer with my class before the whole Sunday School
starts to work on a Christmas nativity. At school I am working
to perform ‘Grease’ with the year group above. I certainly hope
I don’t get confused and sing the wrong songs at inappropriate
Am preparing, with
anticipation, to see my Mum at Christmas. It’s creeping up on
With much love
Sorry I have not written
for so long. I seem to have been exceptionally busy.
At school we have had
SATs, just finishing reports, Parents Eve to come, Prize Giving
Evening and all the end of term shenanigans that happen at every
school. This Sat am I have just returned from setting up an art
exhibit of my class’s work and am returning to school this pm to
help run a whole school fun day organising games in our KS2
block. On returning this evening I am editing my co-teachers
reports as she edits mine this weekend. As you see a little
We have just finished
our class community development project where we raised over
1million UGX to buy educational material for Tigers Club, the
NGO for street children that we also visited last year. We
visited twice and my year group really learnt a lot seeing
another side of life.
However I have also had
plenty of fun as well. I got away to a beautiful lodge in Fort
Portal for the weekend a few weeks back. It reminded me just
how beautiful Uganda really is. I went with two other teachers,
both named Catherine, which of course caused much amusement.
Last night I had Patra,
Silver, Lynette and Colin round to dinner. It was great to
spend some time with them all. We all seem to be working so
hard and hardly ever see each other. It was good to catch up.
Previously I had Prosper, Isaac and Peter round for dinner and
that was a great laugh also as they cooked up a storm in the
Sunday school is going
well. I’m just finishing a two month stint in preparation for
being away over the summer. Have been studying Joseph and
learning the songs from ‘Joseph and his Technicoloured Dream
Coat.’ Great fun. I am also very pleased that a new Senior 1
Sunday School class has been set up in the English speaking
service so that some of the older kids that I have now taught
for 2 years can graduate up to a higher class as I take on some
of the younger ones. My class was getting rather huge.
All the other people
that live in my block are leaving this year. I stay on. I have
inherited 2 cats from one neighbour and am in the process of
buying myself a small car. I seem to be getting further settled
in here. I am greatly looking forward to not only Jonathan,
Laura, Hannah and Amy visiting this summer but also my cousin
Rachel. My flat will be crammed to overflowing and loudly
happy. I am also planning a two week get away for myself to
Kenya with a school friend before the hoards arrive.
Better go… Fun Day
April 7th 2009
Last few days before the Easter holiday. Phew! In school we
have finally moved campus to our new site. This involved all of
KS2 (8 classes) packing everything up in our class rooms and
moving them down to the new building on a rainy Friday. For
those of you who have been here you know what the rain is like!
We were all soaked to the bone as were all our boxes. One
auxiliary slipped on the stairs and knocked himself unconscious
briefly. We sent him to hospital where he recovered quickly. Our
boxes arrived by the end of Friday and we spent Saturday morning
and Monday unpacking.
Here’s a picture of me,
behind my podium of a desk. I am so exhausted and wet through
that I am stuffing coke and chocolate for the sugar rush. The
children returned to their new classes today and were so excited
with the beautiful rooms. When I’m done decorating I’ll send a
picture of the finished thing.
Meanwhile I have been busy in Sunday
School. We continued our puppet practices and performed to a
full church on Palm Sunday.
It went extremely well after
much sweat and toil back stage. Finally we packed about 15 kids
behind the stage for a 10min performance about Easter. My class
had a wonderful time writing and practicing the skit and also
working out two dance routines for the puppets.
The congregation enjoyed it thoroughly and we later got about
twelve adults to sign up to start a puppet group. We shall see.
This Friday I am heading off to Rwanda
and Burundi for a week and a half just as a holiday. Am very
much looking forward to it. Please pray for me.
That’s all for
What’s been going on here? Since I last wrote not too much
has changed at school. I have said I will return next year and
have verbally had a contract offered me but have seen nothing in
writing yet. I am having fun with my class studying Space at the
moment and also making large papier mache models which means I
am regularly covered in flour and water from head to toe. You
should see the mess the children make but we are having fun!!
At church all goes well. I am in the
middle of a puppet project with my class. Two of the church
members who work with MAF have a puppet mission. They are coming
in over the 5 weeks up until Palm Sunday and training my class
to do a puppet show in the church on that Sunday with Easter as
its theme. Last week we all played with the puppets, this week
we are making up props and lines and the following three will be
practice, practice, practice. Am praying it will all come
Meanwhile am starting to
think of my school plans for next term as planning to go
exploring this Easter. Have only a week and a half but heading
down to Rwanda, Kigali and Gisenyi and then to Bujumbora in
Burundi. Will look up Pastor Florent whilst there.
continue to pray for me. Thank you,
Hope you all had a Merry Christmas and a fantastic New Year!
This Christmas I went back
to England for just under three weeks - my first visit in a year
and a third. I went back to Bognor and lived with my Mum and
spent plenty of time with my family. The first week was filled
with necessary appointments with the bank, solicitor, dentist,
doctor, optician etc. Then came the Christmas shopping and
finally Christmas. I’m afraid to say I took every opportunity
offered to eat the sort of food I can’t find here in Uganda and
didn’t feel guilty at all. I believe I had Pavlova about three
times! Now I pay the price and am on a diet. I also went down to
Devon and visited my family there. It was fabulous to just catch
up and spend time. Thank you to everyone in Bognor and Devon for
making my welcome so warm.
I am now back in Uganda and have just started
school again. I’m sorry to say that on our first INSET day back
one of our members of staff died, aged 44, leaving a widow and 5
children. I attended his funeral the following day out in a
village about one and a half hours away from Kampala. The whole
school was shocked and devastated. We continued on with the
beginning of school with the children the day after the funeral.
I restart Sunday School this Sunday and would value your prayers
as I formally inform the school that I wish to continue my
Oct 08 - Catherine has just
returned from a school 'outward bound' trip
Home safe and sound. Trip went very well. Had several anxious
parents and some first time away from home children. It didn't
rain except for lightly in the night and on our return back
across Lake Vctoria.
The tents didn't blow away although we adults ended up
putting up and packing away every one as the kids had no idea at
all what to do!
Kids had a great time on land and in the water
and apart from being up to very late, waking us as they were
scared at night and then up at about 6AM, very well behaved.
Of course there was no electricity so no fridge, lamps
after dark and we cooked on gas or charcoal.
But we ate mountains of food with the healthy
appetite being outside brings.
We were greeted on our return by a sea of anxious parents.
Thank goodness we were able to deliver everyone safe and sound.
I return home to my hot shower and real coffee and a BED.
This has been a very busy start of term for me. Having come
back late from my holiday and then getting food poisoning and
ending up on IV I failed to follow my usual practice of
completing all my planning and preparation before the beginning
of term. I returned on a Thurs, was sick and on IV on Sat up to
midnight, recovering Sun and in school on Mon!
So I have been on constant catch up ever since!
I have been blessed with a lovely natured and
small (both in number and stature) class. I am still in Year 5.
We thankfully didn’t have to move into the new school yet. The
secondary have moved out to the new campus down the road leaving
us primary in sole possession of the school. Unfortunately they
have taken many useful things with them eg over half the library
and because of their desperate need for everything in the new
premises are getting all resources going their way. At the
moment, however, they are trying to operate under very difficult
circumstances with the new school literally being built around
them. When finished it will be a fabulous modern school with
sports field, Olympic sized swimming pool, the most up to date
ICT equipment etc. If you look at it with vision it will be
amazing but meanwhile the teachers are labouring under a lot of
stress. We upper primary will be expected to move in at some
point as well. I hope not too soon!
Our bursar is the latest member of staff
to flee the country in the middle of the night so I hope I get
I have finally managed to get all class assessed and
completed the first assembly for the school. Starting to now
really get teeth into this term’s curriculum. My next task is to
help arrange our Year 5 Outdoor Education trip where we take the
whole of Year 5 on a 3 day, 2 night excursion to learn to sail.
It is great fun but utterly exhausting as on constant duty for
all that time also sleeping in a tent!
I am back working in Sunday school and
attended a most of the day rehearsal last Sat which then lead to
a children’s service on the Sun. It was a great success. The
children lead both services. One started at 8AM so there for
7.30AM and the next started at 11AM and finished at 1PM. The
children lead everything from singing, welcoming visitors,
prayers to a dance routine. The pieces were also different for
each service as the first was in Luganda and the second English.
The children did very well indeed and I also had to be on stage
the whole time singing and dancing. Thank goodness I can’t see
how awful I must look!
Had Jess to stay for a few days on her way to
South Africa. She was a lot of fun to have around and I enjoyed
her company. Soon Mum will be visiting me for about 2 weeks and
then I have Vicky and Ingrid up until Christmas. My house will
be full and busy. At Christmas I will be coming home for the
first time in nearly a year and a half. Please have all the
central heating going despite rising prices or at least a pile
of many layers of winter clothes which I can layer up to become
I look forward to seeing many of you soon,
Catherine's Summer Exploits!
This is the ferry I took
across Lake Victoria from Bakoba to Mwanza over night. I was
glad to see it was modern and wasn’t overcrowded. I had a cabin
on the side, middle row. In the push and shove to get on board
my glasses got knocked off and trampled on! A friendly guard
returned them to me slightly bent.
Bakoba beach, where I waited for the
ferry to leave. To get here I swapped from a big bus to a
minibus on the border. Now Tanzanian minibuses… I thought I had
seen it all. Every seat taken, every lap full with produce,
cases, children, chicken or even more adults. Any standing space
by door crammed with people which were pushed in by the
conductor forcibly. Then there was a customised runner welded on
the outside for at least another 4 people to hang onto as we
careered along with door open. Then just to compound the
discomfort of the smelly armpits in the face extremely loud
music is played with the base so loud that your spine nearly
breaks with the vibrations. I was pleased to slither out from
the meld of humanity at Bakoba!
Freedom and fresh air on the
beach! Big smile!
This is the cabin I slept in, first
class. I was on the bottom bunk. The lady in the picture was on
the top. It was a smooth crossing. By the end of the trip I was
carrying a rack sack and two large bags like the one you can see
in the picture. Too much shopping!
This is a smart hotel in
Mwanza, the other side of the lake, which had a perfect balcony
to hang out on and enjoy the breeze. It also had a beautiful
pool which I stuck my grimy feet in. Needless to say I was
staying the other side of town in a hostel!
This is an ice cream parlour in Mwanza
which made its own really good ice cream. I made a hot line
there of course. Look closely at the picture… the mirror behind
me shows the rest of the shop, even the man behind the counter
taking the photo.
This is the tent I slept in
with two other girls in the Serengeti. It had several vital
parts missing and was held up by nails and prayers. If it had
rained we would have been soaked. As you can see the camp was
open and wildlife was everywhere. I spent both nights hoping a
lion wouldn’t casually swat the tent over and render one of its
occupants like a zebra we saw!
We saw tons of wildlife and really up
close. Also saw a cheetah with cub and a leopard which I had
never seen before. We also met a corrupt ranger who tried to
fine us a ridiculous amount for going off track when we hadn’t.
He took our papers and after making us sit in the noon sun for
30mins made us drive an hour and a half back to his office.
After talking to his superior we escaped unscathed but
frustrated. Still had a great time munching on noodles and
frankfurters whilst contemplating our wobbly tent!
his is a volcanic crater which has a salt lake inside
with lots of flamingos. It also has vast herds of animals at
certain times of the year. I saw two black rhinos here. To get
down one rapidly descends a narrow dirt track with a precipitous
fall on one side whilst holding onto your hat and holding your
These are my two travel companions during
the Serengeti trip. They left me here in Karatu. I have not been
greedy and finished before them… they are just starting their
seconds. I loved my stay in Karatu and went to a local service
there all in Swahili where the unaccompanied singing was out of
The one street that is Karatu.
To leave I had to walk the whole length of this road to catch a
bus from the far end at 6AM. It was pitch black and still night.
I was kindly accompanied by a night guard with one small torch.
In the far distance I could see the bus’s lights flashing as I
desperately prayed it wouldn’t leave without me!
From Karatu I got a driver to take me to
Lake Manyara. Here I saw lots of birdlife but no tree climbing
lions as advertised. We also saw the sad scene below. A baby
elephant has died. The family stand around mourning and blowing
dust in their distress. They will not leave the spot for days.
This is my hostel in Moshi, just below Mt
Kilimanjaro. I was frozen solid as we were high and the temp
low. Some of the windows had no glass and I had to stuff them
with a precious blanket. Note the washing in the background.
Whilst in Moshi I never saw Kili as she was constantly behind
This is one of the gates into
Kilimanjaro National Park. Spot the intrepid climber preparing
to stride up the mountain. In my old age I didn’t even
contemplate trying to climb Kili. I would have had to have gone
into training to achieve it! But I did go on a good long walk on
the foothills of the mountain and saw some fantastic scenery.
This was my washing procedure in Moshi. I
had a shower but the water was only cold and I was already
freezing. After much explaining and many hours waiting I was
finally proudly presented with a bucket of scalding water. I sat
dangling arms and legs in the bucket to warm up until it cooled
down enough for a proper wash.
This was the bathroom of the YWCA in Dar. Not
too nice. There was also no blanket or even a towel. I stayed
here 5 nights but did not come back on my return to Dar. Instead
I stayed in the Baptist Hostel.
This is Kathy and Laura. They are connections/friends of Ian
in Dar. Laura took me out for a meal culminating in delicious
homemade Kit Kat ice cream. I also attended their house church
and met lots of their associates.
20th July 2008
welcome Zach - I think he will have a great time here. He fits in
well with the others and will give anything a go. Anyway, also
had sun lunch with Ian and Zach in town. Good to see Zach has a
healthy male, teenage appetite!
Then Monday 14th I set off on my travels. Instead of resting and
recharging, the sane choice, I have chosen to go travelling
round Tanzania for nigh on 6 weeks. As you know I hate to fly
and therefore am taking any transport other than the plane;
bus, minibus, taxi, foot, train and boat. On Monday I travelled
by bus down to the border of Tanzania on the west side of Lake
Victoria. Here I walked across the border getting my visa on
route. I then stuffed myself in a very over crowded minibus and
continued onto Bukoba. Here I caught a night ferry across Lake
Victoria to Mwanza. Thank God it wasn't too overloaded and there
wasn't a storm so we didn't over turn.
Stayed in Mwanza 2 nights and explored the town. Of course I did
some shopping in the market which I now have to carry. I can't
resist the African materials.
I also finalised my onwards tour. I linked up with two Swedish
girls and we hired a car together and set of into the serengeti
to camp! Needless to say the car broke down, the tent had no
pegs and was definitely not rain proof and a corrupt official
tried to force us to pay a fine for going off road when we
hadn't. But it was amazing. The serengeti fulfils all the images
of Africa you have seen on wildlife programmes. I saw elephants,
lions on a kill, cheetah, leopard, hippos etc. The camping was
fun except for the tent. We then drove onto Ngorogoro Crater
park and drove down into a game reserve in the middle of an
extinct volcano. Exceptionally beautiful views and also saw two
black rhino. An amazing three days.
I have been dropped of at Karatu and am staying at the Lutheran
hostel for the next two nights. I am having a slow day today. I
went to church this morning. It was all in the local language
and I was sandwiched between two curious girls. I was the only
white in a congregation of about 300. I understood not a word
but had the most marvellous time. The singing nearly reduced me
to tears it was so beautiful. Now I have pottered off into the
one road town and worked out my bus tickets onwards. Am also
arranging a visit to the nearby Lake Manyara for tomorrow.
I will be continuing onto Moshi, hope to see Kili here, and then
onto Dar. Staying there 5 nights and hopefully meeting a friend
of Ian's there. Then going to Bagamoyo, a historic beach town
with much history for about 1 week. Being met there by a school
friend who will travel onwards with me for a while. From there
we go to Zanzibar, Pemba (an even remoter tropical island above
Zanzibar) and then back to Dar where we part. Then I will catch
the bus into Kenya and Mobassa for a few nights. Then the train,
supposed to be great fun in an old colonial style, to Nairobi.
Here I will meet Edgar and have a meal with him but am really
just passing through. Then catch the bus back to Kampala,
exhausted on 21st Aug.
I will have a few days to sleep and recoup before INSET starts
and then a week of INSET and planning and sorting and then the
new class arrives.
As you can see I need much prayer for travelling mercies
especially as I am a single woman on her own. I am very careful
but being a stranger in these places you often stumble into
trouble. The majority of people are very kind and I have some
experience of Africa and travelling on my own but it teaches me
further to rely on God for each thing...food, safety, a bed!
I can still receive texts and even emails on my phone but unless
I get to an internet cafe can only make short replies. I would
value your prayers. I hope that all is going well for you all
and please send my love to everyone.
With much love,
well I still have 2 weeks to go of term. It has been an
exceptionally long term... we have been at it since April 2nd
without a half term and the last few weeks are dragging. I have
finished all examinations and they are all graded. Reports are
written and are going through final process of editing. Must be
printed, copied and sent out this week. Will also need to
collect together all the year's
plans for filing, totally up to date and assign planning tasks
for over the summer so we come back ready for Autumn. There is
a chance we may have to move schools to our new up to date, very
fancy school. This means the whole class needs to be packed up
in boxes before we leave for the summer.
Meanwhile school goes on as normal. We are presently writing a
play and making masks to present the actors. We will practice
and perform. The kids are having great fun with paper mache
everywhere and dripping flour and water and exploding balloons.
Am holding out for end of term!
We returned to Tigers a week or two ago. We
planted our plants with the boys there and had a lot of fun. I
hope the plants survive. We also went to the Tigers halfway
house where those who will be fostered are re-educated in social
skills and in academics. It was great for my kids to see. They
were far wilder than the ex-street
boys. The were guided round the farm by the boys in small
groups and also saw where they slept, played and learnt.
We then all sat and had rice and beans eating from a plate
with our fingers. This was the first time many of my kids had
done this. We then donated lots of Coke and masses of homemade
banana cake. It all got eaten very fast as you can imagine. It
was a fantastic experience.
My class have all made power point presentations
about all of our project with Tigers. My co-teacher and I will
cobble together the best of the pages as a presentation for the
children's parents who will be invited
in to watch their children give a talk about what we did.
Should be fun. We have left over money so are attempting to buy
Tigers club a full 16 person football strip in black and
orange. (Tiger's colours) Each of my kids will have their
names emblazed on the bottom of the shirt as well as the logo
Tigers and the number on the back. Pray it works out as
it will be a fine gift.
Sunday school is going well. Am working through
Ruth which is a great bit of the bible to teach. We have our 'I
am...' posters up and everyone is learning lots. Next week is
my last week and then will be replaced for the summer by one of
the elders, Andrew. Will do them lots of good to have him.
Thinking of you all as my feet get very itchy!
just over halfway through an exceptionally long term. Just
about to start on the big end of year tests SATS and then write
up reports with parents eve in tow as well as the usual
teaching, marking and prep. End of term-itus is already setting
in, although we have approx 6 weeks to go.
few of the things I’ve been up to that you might be interested
in. My class is doing a community development project. We
decided to raise money for a NGO called Tigers which aids street
children. We planted sunflower seeds which we sponsored for
growth. Meanwhile we went and visited the headquarters of
Tigers and found out about the children there. We introduced
ourselves, played games, listened to members of Tigers tell us
about their lives and then wrapped it up with an amazing game of
where a little shy at first but soon got stuck in. We will
return with some plants we will have bought with the sponsor
money and are planning to plant them with the boys making them a
beautiful, peaceful corner to enjoy in urban Kampala. We also
hope to visit the halfway house were about 30 of the boys live
before being fostered into families.
we have just had an all day Bible Holiday School. Took place on
a Saturday. Was really hard to get up in the morning but well
worth the effort! Theme was Ps 100:3 Had praise and worship,
puppets, all age bible study, small age group bible study, 2
lots of craft, games and of course lunch. Kids had an excellent
time and it was fun to get to know them better and jump around
being silly. In Sunday School this AM finished my series on the
‘I ams…’of Jesus. Hoping to make some posters next week in
class about them.
Greetings from Uganda in the rainy season. Here’s a little
update about what I’ve been up to. Spring term ended well. I
took my class on an outing. We had been studying water and so we
went to visit the Rwenzori water factory where we saw water
being pumped from the ground, purified, bottled, boxed and
transported. Fitted very well with the work we had done in
class on water purification and water usage in Uganda. We then
went onto the national stadium where we were privileged to meet
the National football team, the Cranes. We watched them
practice, had our photos taken with them, kicked the ball round
with a few of them and then had our own game of footie on their
pitch. Quite an experience. We then had our lunch in the
stands before returning back to school. A wonderful day.
and my Mum, Aunt and Uncle turned up from England. They had a
day exploring town along with Ray, a YEA worker, and then I took
them to Jinja to see the source of the Nile. Then Ian took us
on a 5 night 6 day safari to the Ssese islands, Lake Mburo and
Kibale forest. Colin, Lynette and David Cormel accompanied us
to the Ssese. We had a wonderful time travelling by ferry,
experiencing tropical storms, having a surprise birthday party
for mum, having a foot safari and seeing the animals at Lake
Mburo, chimp trekking in Kibale forest and relaxing on a
beautiful tea plantation. On our return we had one more day in
Kampala before they had to go home.
returned to a drenched and wet Kampala with much evidence of
flooding. My back compound wall had fallen down due to the
build up of water. It is presently being rebuilt and a temporary
one in place at present. When Mum left at 6.30AM it was raining
so hard that Ian had real problems reaching us and we had to
wade out through the mud and torrents of water running down the
roads to meet him! However we reached the airport in plenty of
Before Easter the Sunday School had been working hard on an
Easter extravaganza which involved all the children from the
Lugandan and English services and the church choir. It was
fantastic that the children were put central stage on a very
important day in the church calendar and that the service was
bilingual therefore involving all. The performance went
extremely well with over 800 people attending. People commented
on how well it went and we have 10 new banners made for the
service still decorating the church. Now it will be a relief to
return to ‘normal’ Sunday school lessons for a few months!
Have met up with David C once or twice and will be waving him
off shortly as his 6 months stay comes to an end. He will be
Now I am left with the aftermath. Much putting to right in the
house and then preparation for school which starts again this
Wed. I will be working all the way through to July 11th
without a half term. We will have one or two long weekends as
there will be a few national holidays. After that I will have
completed one academic year here in Kampala and although I have
travelled around a bit will not have left Uganda for a year!
Time flies. I hope to travel again over the summer and possibly
return to the UK at Christmas when I can catch up with all the
relatives and friends in one fell swoop!
Thank you so much to all the people who write to me and pray for
me. It is very valued.
With much love,
Monday 11th Feb 08
Had a fun packed
Sunday this weekend. Was invited to Alex’s graduation. This was about
two hours drive, one hour on tarmac and 1 hour on a very bumpy road.
Got picked up by Ian, Alex, Prosper and Isaac at approx 9.15 AM and set
off. Following independently was another bus with some of Alex’s
university/church friends. We had a fine journey there, stopping for
sodas to take to the family. However by our arrival the back suspension
was hanging down due to the bumpiness of the road.
On arrival we
attended a catholic church service as Alex’s dad is a catholic. LONG
service crammed into a small schoolroom. Alex’s achievements were
celebrated and the people of the village were happy for him. He gave a
talk at the end encouraging the young to continue with their education
and to put God central in their life. Then returned to Alex’s father’s
home where a awning had been put up and was in the process of being
decorated by his sisters and aunties whilst his mother organised the
cooking, plates etc. The young men continued with the awning/music
whilst the more older and more honoured guest sat inside
waiting/talking/reading the newspapers etc. When food ready we washed
our hands and dug into a veritable feast of local village food. Fingers
first, no cutlery. Then the speeches started and continued and
continued and continued…. Mostly in Lugandan. It was obvious that Alex
is well loved by friends and family alike and all enjoyed reminiscing on
Alex’s past, what he had achieved and his future. Then the cake was
cut and passed round followed by a flurry of photos.
As dark descended
we finally loaded the car again. This time Ian, Alex, me and 4 of
Alex’s sisters. We got a short way down the bumpy road before we got a
flat. So Ian and Alex progressed to changing the tire. Unfortunately
as we were stopped on a slope the jack would not go high enough. By
mobile phone light we searched down stones and a bit of log, balanced
the jack on them and jacked again only to find the jack was not
cooperative and kept sinking back down. Meanwhile the girls and I
slowed down cars as they passed so they wouldn’t bash Ian and Alex off
the road as they plunged past at terrific speed or cover us head to toe
in red dust. This is all in the pitch black mind you! We also asked
motorists as they passed if they had another jack. We found no jack but
plenty of advice and climbing out of the taxi to peer over your
shoulder. Finally with a little help from a taxi driver got on the new
wheel only to find that that too was semi flat. We limped to the
nearest town where thank goodness Alex’s aunt was waiting. Here we
girls unloaded ourselves and reloaded into the aunties car and taxis
leaving the lads behind to deal with the car. As by now it was 10.30ish
on a sun night no mechanic was to be found. So the lads stayed over
night and got the car sorted in the morning. Think the suspension had
gone further and wheels needed sorting. I arrived home 11.30, covered
with dust with my contact lenses dried to my eyes which were burning
with soreness. What a day to remember!
Here’s a few
pictures of the nicer parts of the day. Wish you’d been there!
Jan 29th 08
Here’s a little
update from Sunday School over here. On the 27th of Jan we
had a joint Baptist Church children’s meeting called Celebrate Kids.
Each church had to prepare three songs with actions. One as the theme
song of the whole celebration, one as a district song and one for their
own church. Needless to say we teachers and children had to practice
long and hard for weeks in advance, even meeting on Saturdays and during
the week. It was good for all of the children in KBC to join together
- the children from the first service who are usually taught in
Lugandan and the children from the second service who are usually taught
in English. It was also great to get some fantastic drumming in and we
had fun making up some funny dance movements including a cheer ending in
a shout that literally raised the roof top. Approx 70 children took
part in the performance although there were others who also came to some
of the practices. We had some great stripy Tshirts for them to wear and
they all looked very smart.
On the day we
performed in our church in the morning and then we teachers held onto
the kids and gave them lunch out the back of the church. We then all
packed into what ever car/minibus that was available (health and safety
in the UK would have had a fit) and drove the short distance to an other
church. Here the kids enjoyed joining together to sing and listening to
each other also getting the opportunity to watch a puppet show, see some
dancers and hear a short talk. Exhausted by the end we walked back to
church where the parents picked up their children. It was only when I
got home and after finally eating and putting my feet up I downloaded my
pictures that I really realised how great the day had been for kids and
Here’s a few
photos. (Also some taken by Steve Jenkins of the rehearsals - more
on his site 'openlife')
All going well here.
Only three weeks into half term and exhausted. My class has finally
been split. So first we had the emotional trauma for all concerned with
who goes where.
Now I have a new teacher and TA to support with plans, aid etc. Gone
from just looking after myself to trying to lead a team. HARD work but
in the long run when they all know what they are doing it will be brill
as I have only 13 children in my class now. Yes you heard it 13!
Marking takes half the time and the kids get double the attention.
Bliss. BUT meanwhile I need to get everyone up to speed.
Have parents evenings next week and am not looking forward to the long
list of groans I will hear about the split.
Meanwhile church is very busy. We have a joint Sunday school service
with a whole bunch of other churches. Our kids must do three songs and
we practice on sat and sun. Performance this sun and then it will be
Have 2 more weeks of school and then a half term. Going to a
beautiful lake in the SW called lake bonyoni. Going to sit in a posh
tent, read a book, drink coffee and Gand T
and eat chocolate whilst enjoying a spectacular view. Can't wait.
write and tell me the news,
23rd November 2007
Hello to everyone
and thanks for your numerous enquiries after me. All is going very well
here. I have been very busy at school over the last few weeks and am
presently working with the Year 6 to put on a massive performance of the
Christmas Carol including songs, props, costumes etc. It is eating up a
lot of school time. Must also put together some sort of end of term
display for the parents. My class are building battery powered cars
from scratch. This also is driving me nuts…but the kids are having a
wail of a time.
At church we are
also working towards Christmas in the Sunday School where we are going
to perform for the whole church in a few weeks time. Not much, a song
or two and some readings, but still takes organisation. The Sunday
school material I bought over has been taken in and with some training
in Jan I am hoping it will be implemented early next year.
It is CHOGM here
at the moment and the Queen, Philip and I believe Charles are here. Our
half term was pushed back so I have had the week off. Didn’t go
anywhere though many people left Kampala if not the country to try and
avoid the fuss. It hasn’t been as bad as expected. Ugandans seem
genuinely glad to have the queen here and are busy making as much money
out of it as possible. People have lined the streets to see her and
watched her opening speech with interest on TV. It has also meant a big
clear up around Kampala, planting plants, clearing rubbish, filling
potholes which everyone has appreciated. In just a week though I am
sure we will be back to normal.
I have two more
hectic weeks of school and then I break up for Christmas. Am going to
Jinja for a day or two to wind down. Then doing a few days on starting
my reports due in Jan, then Jon and Laura come for a while and I shall
be busy hosting, then I have a week to plan the whole of my next term’s
work. So will be busy.
Am enjoying it
very much here and now feel quite settled in. However can’t wait to see
J and L and family at Christmas and my Mum and aunt and uncle at
Easter. Any other visitors more than welcome!
Missing you all
but not your cold weather!
30th September 2007
am writing this at 4AM as unable to sleep! All is going well here. I
am now well established at school and getting to know my class and TA
well. My class are fun and boisterous and have over anxious parents.
Have had a series of parents meetings and even INSET on a Saturday so am
seriously tired and a little overworked. However have a long weekend
next weekend and am going to Sipi Falls with a group of school friends.
Plan on doing very little except sleep, eat and read whilst admiring the
Haven't seen Ian for 2 weeks as he has been
off in Kenya. Hope to catch up with him in church today. However have
seen plenty of David and have taken him to one of Colin and Lynette's
wedding meetings. He is hoping to help me out in school once a week as
well which will be fun for him. He is doing very well and settling in
CHOGM week fast approaches and every business rushes to be prepared.
The rain has not been so bad here but I know many parts of the country
are still suffering. I have been starting to slowly sort out my flat
for Laura and Jonathan's visit. I bought 2
single beds for Hannah and Amy and now have had bed posts put on them
and mossy nets. Just need mattresses. Will all be sorted by
Christmas. More worrying is the fact that the extremely large spider
that used to live on the ceiling of my balcony in a very large web has
gone missing! I must keep a wary eye out for him!
Church goes well. I teach each week in Sunday school. The children are
fantastic. I went out for lunch with Faith, Mim and Maria last week and
had an update of their work in VIVA and Compassion.
Thank you for all your support,
4th September 2007
All going well. Have spent most of the last two weeks in meetings and
then trying to plan and get to know my TA in
between times followed by mad dashes into town to buy food and a few
basics. Have acquainted myself with the local buses, the boda drivers,
guards etc. A lot to learn. After that have been working in the evenings
starting my planning most of which I have to
start from scratch. Have a long way to go on that yet but the children
are coming tomorrow so will have to sort it all out as I go along. Feel
exhausted before term even begins.
Have a nasty tickling cough that keeps me up at night along with the
local dogs and music from the local bar. Am growing accustomed to the
local pollution both fumes and noise. Those of
you planning to visit me - DON’T be put off. Just pack some ear plugs if
you are a light sleeper! Have met up with Ian and he gave my home a look
over and showed me a local shop or two. Have gone to one of Collin and
Lynette’s wedding meeting which was great fun. I plan to go every week,
if possible. Met with Pastor Andrew and the Sunday School leader.
Immediately taken back into Sunday School and am already teaching full
time. Last Sunday went well and I gave the leaders a copy or two of the
books I bought over. I hope they will be used well.
On a lighter tone, I attended a yearly event – a goat race. It was set
up a bit like a horse race with an oval track. There were 8 races with
10 goats in each race. The goats ran around the track 2 times being
pushed by a large padded board if they became
reluctant. Was most amusing to watch. School starts tomorrow and I will
be even busier. Hope to have a quiet
weekend and do a little planning. I have 25 children if they all turn up
which is the max allowed in the class. I expect the parents won’t like
that. My new class had 5 teachers last year and the parents will be
anxious that they have a good teacher this year. The children also got a
bit out of hand last year and in bad habits. So I am in for a challenge!
Much love C
22nd August 2007
well I have arrived. So time to fill you in. As you all know I hate
flying and I can't say I enjoyed the flights.
However they were straight forward, all on time and with only normal
turbulence. That was a relief.
On arrival I was picked up by the head of primary and miraculously all
my baggage had arrived. I was 5kg over my allowed weight but didn't have
to pay any excess luggage. That would have been 150 pounds! The head of
primary told me I was not in the same flats that I had seen before. I
thought, oh no! However God has provided me with a 3 bedroom flat in a
small compound which has 4 flats altogether. It is about 10mins walk
from school. It has a large lounge and kitchen, 3 bedrooms, a bathroom
with a flushing loo and a BATH and another toilet and a shower in a
separate room. I have lots of hot water and have yet to see a cockroach.
WOW! There are two compound cats so I don't miss my cat so much. We are
right by a local market which is great for cheap veg and not far from 2
small super markets.
So now I have all this space, people, you had better come and visit!
The first night I just slept. Luckily I had my Ugandan sim card so I
could contact mum. The next day I still felt a bit groggy but started to
do some shopping for the flat. I got some food, towels, mosquito net,
bin etc. Starts to add up when you have to buy stuff to set up a house
from scratch. I was returning home on a boda for the first time and
couldn't find the correct turning. We were zooming around looking for
the road when a nice lady pointed us in the right direction. She turned
up at my flat later and
introduced herself as my cleaner. So she is starting today. Another God
send and a worry off my mind.
Then in the evening I went to a new teachers informal get together at
the head's home. This was great to meet everyone. I also had the
opportunity to see quite a few of the other flats and I think God got
the perfect one for me! I tried to talk to lots of people, especially
the Ugandan staff. The ICT man, Roger (Ugandan), goes to St Francis, I
think a Church of Uganda and I met a
lovely lady called Ellie (Ugandan) who is the Year 1 teacher who works
in the Sunday School in Kampala Pentecostal Church. She will be some one
I must become friendly with. Also chatted a lot with the lady that will
live below me.
Today I have come to school to start filling out forms and meet the
office staff. Also to use the computers here. I will not have access on
my lap top for some time I imagine so my letters may be few and far
between for a while. I expect to do more shopping today for the house
and then visit my old house mates this evening. Should be fun. Hope to
start sorting out the
laptop on Wed.
So all is going very well and God has provided more than I need! Please
write and tell me how you all are.
2nd March 2007 Dear all, Sorry I haven't written for a while.
The computer isn't working at our place
I was spoilt to have it anyway. Whenever I go
into hotmail it crashes before I can do anything,
so now must visit internet cafe which is a long journey into town and
costs. Last week was a bit of a non entity to me. I kicked my heels
waiting for everything to start. I spent long hours sitting alone in
shopping malls drinking coffee. This all became rather depressing so
decided to get really busy this week and have. On Tuesday I went to an
agency called open doors. They take children off the street and first of
all try to take them home or find out what home life is like if any.
Then with parents and child's permission, if they wish, they are given a
home on site and educated there at first. When they are a little more
settled they are then sent to ordinary primary/secondary school.
I went into the interim class,those trying to
get used to not being on the streets. Only 10 kids, all boys and right
hoodlums. Needless to say that was just my cup of tea. Will be returning
every Tues. Then on Wednesday I went into the compassion office and
helped out. Was given a job they thought would take me a day and
completed it in one hour. Big mistake!
Have now been given several 100 report cards which I have to find the
file for, up date all entries, work out average grades, note if going up
a year and graph their progress before re-filing.
Needless to say this is a massive job. I don't know if this is what I
will continue with next week but it is good being in the office getting
to know everyone and how things work. Then on Thurs I get to go out
visiting the children. I tag along with one of the office staff and just
observe. Sounds easy but I actually found this the hardest. I am no
social worker and the extremes these kids live in is upsetting for me as
an unhardened westerner to see. Still this is life in all it's gory
glory here and I know that compassion is doing all it can to aid these
children. On Wed night went to youth meeting, hoping to go to a student
meeting tonight and have compassion on Sat and a youth meeting and then
Sunday school on Sunday.
So as you can see much busier. Praying that I have wisdom in the
situations I enter into and grace to deal with what I see. Hoping you
are all well. Oh yes, an answer to prayer. I have been offered full time
work for the last half of the summer term. That is a relief.
keep praying for the first half as I shall be broke on my return
Friday 23rd Feb 2007 Sorry haven't written for a while. Our
computer has gone dodgy and will
only work occasionally. All is well here if going a little fast. I have
had a quieter week this week in which I have got myself organised for
the next month. Will be working with compassion wed and
office and visits. On sat I have a compassion teaching day. On
do Sunday school and on Tues will work in a project called open doors
(takes street kids in). This leaves Mon totally free and Fri preparation
day. This will keep me plenty busy. I will soon have to start taking
action looking for a job on my return. Not a nice thought. Hope all is
well with you.
Much love Catherine
Monday 19th Feb 2007
Had a great week last week. Started on Monday by taking a trip with the
other 3 girls in my house down to Queen Elizabeth National Park. Hired a
driver and he drove us down there and organised all sorts of game drives
and boat trips for us. Was a great experience and saw lots of animals I
had never seen before except for in a zoo eg - elephants, hipos and even
lions up close. We also went for a walk through a section of forest
spoting chimps and elephants. We had to cross several rivers by climbing
over felled trees that acted as bridges. My high light was when one poor
bloke slipped and fell in the river. I know I'm mean and later I put my
foot in a hole and fell flat on my face which serves me right for
laughing at him. We returned home on Thursday. Since then I have helped
in the compassion school on Sat and taught in Sunday school. Went to
compassion today to arrange some home visits. Nothing yet. Yesterday we
went to a traditional dance evening. Great fun. We had to get up and
dance but luckily I have the right size bum for this culture! The two
main actors from The Last King of Scotland were there and it was fun to
rub shoulders with Holliwood stars. Haven't seen the film yet. This
morning while it was still dark we had a small earthquake! I woke up as
my bed was shaking and all the animal were howling and making a fuss.
It only lasted a minute or two but that was the first quake I've ever
February 12th 2007
Hi, I have returned from upcountry, as they call it. It wasn't
easy but rewarding.
Started with taking a huge bus from Kampala to Hoima. It was
huge as it had massive wheels to get through the potholes. Grog,
you would love to have it! it broke down only once on our
journey and didn't take long to fix so I think it was relatively
good. Ian accompanied me up to Hoima as there was a course for
youth leaders being run. As well as every seat in the bus being
full the aisle was full with people and their belongings down to
chicken and anceint grandmas. 3 and a half hours in the
sweltering heat followed with lots of bumping around.
Countryside scrubby and populated mostly along the road.
On arrival we caught bodas to the hotel where Ian was to stay. I
met Rev Godfrey there who took me to his home and then to his
nextdoorneighbours where I was to stay. Big, quiet house,
running water in tap outside, pit latrine to visit at midnight,
rats in the roof and very kind, generous and loving couple. Him
a principle of a nearby school and she an agricultural teacher.
Next day attended course for youth leaders. Ended up having to
talk shortly also! Course punctuated with lots of singing and
dancing to drums which I enjoyed. Following day Collin joined us
and I went to Mustard seed Orphanage. It was a bit overwhelming
the first time you got there. The children were lovely. I spent
the next few days spending the mornings playing with the kids
and then reading, telling stories and drawing in the afternoons
as they hadn't gone back to school yet. EXHAUSTING!!! In
evenings returned to my quiet house to recover and be force fed
with copious amounts of ugandan food cooked on a small cool
stove taking hours of intensive labour.
Went to sunday school on Sun and again asked to talk. Also
slipped into the back of the cathedral to see the end of a
church of uganda service.
I had some free time on Monday and had chats wirh several
interesting people including evace who runs Mustard seed. A
fantastic woman who is immensly strong and loving. She called me
dear all the time and hugged me so hard she lifted me of my
feet! From Tuesday on I started working in a local school of
1000 kids. 75 plus per class and as the beginning of the year
here and kids hadn't been streamed was teaching 140plus per
class room. A bit of a squash. Here I either taught or marked
for the teachers. It was a fascinating experience and the style
of teaching is very different and caning totally exceptable.In
the evening i still went to Mustard Seed.
Wed night I felt sick. Spent whole night violently throwing up
and with sky high temp. Dragged myself to the local clinic next
day and told was food poisoning not malaria. Returned back home
and spent most of the day sleeping, couldn't keep anything down.
My hosts kept prodding me awake to check I was still alive. The
next day I felt more normal and could keep my food down.
Unfortunately this was my day to return to Kampala. So said my
goodbyes and returned by taxi.
Oh the wonders of a flushing toilet minus wildlife and a sink
with running water. I really enjoyed Hoima and got a lot out of
it but will not pretend it was easy or all sunshine.
Have a weekend here to get sorted and then hopefully off on a
visit to Queen Elizabeth National Park with my housemates,
Looking forward to hearing your news,
Much love Catherine
Saturday 20th January 2007
Hi, here's the latest,
Very busy week. Tuesday to Thursday helped Ian run a discipleship course
at his house. This involved a group of about 20 teens from Compassion
camping in Ian's garden. I spent most of my time stuck in the kitchen
helping with the cooking or endlessly washing up. Other than that I
spent time with the campers, particularly the girls, attended all the
seminars and even took one! My most important lesson was how to peel a
matoke which amused everyone as I was so bad at it even after a whole
bag full! Slept on the floor in Ingrid's room. Had fun avoiding the rat
at night which tried to get at the food we had stored in the room and
dodging the fast moving cockroaches in the bathroom. Went back and forth
to Ian's house on a motor bike /boda am getting better at sitting
side-saddle and not nearly falling of every time we go over a bump.
Got lost on my return and zoomed round my home area looking for the
right road for about 10mins trying not to panic as i had no phone. On my
return home our house was full of 18 teenage girls from the church who
were staying the night. So back to the kitchen and also repeated my talk
for them. They were typical teenage girls and didn't stop talking until
3AM. Yesterday Ian and Collin took me out for a late welcome meal and we
talked about what else I can do here. In the evening I went out to a
Christian University student meeting again on a boda which is crazy at
night. Kampala at night is not so safe so need to be careful. Another
discipleship course next week and then possible a conference and staying
at the orphanage in Hoima for a week or two. Very busy! Also arranging a
trip to Queen Elizabeth Park.
My mobile phone number is - If you phone on your land line
00256774426784 If you phone on your mobile
+256774426784 I HOPE THIS IS RIGHT.
Sunday 14th January 2007
I have arrived safely. Ian picked me up and
gave me a roof for the first night. It was good to catch up with Collin
and Ingrid also. Attended the Youth camp and helped out in any capacity
I could as well as getting to know as many of the leaders and staff as
possible. A lot of names to remember! About 90 people at camp many
rededicated themselves or became Christians for the first time. Focus on
leadership and living a Christian life. Have now returned to Kampala and
am at Faith's and Maria's. Going to church this AM and introducing
myself. Next two weeks helping Ian with 2 Compassion gatherings at his
house. Hope all goes well for you. Prayers much appreciated. Love from
sunny Uganda Catherine PS Please send my thanks from the people who
received gifts over here which I carried over and my thanks for the
prayers. It helped on the flight although I didn't sleep for the whole
journey as so nervous.