Today was our last day in schools and it was our chance to visit Katunguru Primary School. We arrived promptly at 9.00am and were taken on a tour of the school. Katunguru has the most issues of the three schools that the Twinning Project is involved in mainly due to the lack of security in and around the school. This results in the school having theft and vandalism, and Tara is doing a great job in trying to rally the school community.
After a tour of the school Rebecca and I went down to the women’s craft cooperative (which has been supported by the Twinning Project). Our visit there was twofold. Firstly, to buy some typical Ugandan items for a shared box between the schools. This will help greatly when delivering Uganda in the curriculum. Secondly to buy some gifts for our nearest and dearest. I saw a lovely wall hanging with a beautiful poem about the value of husbands and suggested that Rebecca buy it for hers. I am unfortunately unable to print her reply as this is a family blog! Needless to say, Stu (who had joined us by this time) and I were shocked by Rebecca’s poor attitude and rebuked her severely knowing how upset Iain (Rebecca’s husband) would be by this callous behaviour.
When we returned to the school we were treated to a super show by the school choir. Once again dancing was involved. Once again I was dragged out to dance. Once again the general public will never see it. There then began several speeches. Ugandans take their speeches very seriously and there are lots of introductions, welcomes and ‘thank yous’, so consequently they tend to take a long time. Before dinner Rebecca and I went out to play football and netball with the children while Tara and Stu were in a meeting. I stood out on the right wing a whipped in crosses like Steve Coppell in his prime (for those of you who are of tender years, look him up, he was a much better player than Beckham!) .
Lunch was fantastic. It was Ugandan style fish and chips. The fish was caught on the nearby lake as Katunguru is a fishing village. Tilapia was the fish we had, which had been coated in flour and barbecued. It tasted absolutely fantastic! We had Irish spuds, chips and plenty of salad to go with it.
Before we left we were all presented with small presents for our families and so ended our last school visit of this trip. There is still much work to be done, but we feel that it has been a tremendously successful visit.
The day was far from over and our next visit was for the river cruise. Again this was brilliant! We got really close to elephants and hippos, buffalo, a range of birds and three increasingly big crocodiles. Unfortunately, Rebecca sullied the afternoon for everyone when she thought she had spotted an elephant with a fifth leg. What the elephant did next provided clear evidence that this was no leg. I would like to be able to report what Rebecca said next, but unfortunately she used language that is not included in either the science or PSHE curriculum. Rebecca’s outburst drew the attention of everyone on the boat and I’m afraid did the reputation of the Twinning Project no good at all. Iain, please have a word!
On our return to Hippo House we had a meeting with some of the UWA staff about the Twinning Project in general. This went on for a long time and at its conclusion we were about to go to bed. However, we heard a loud noise so Stu and I went out to explore. In the darkness we saw two buffalo behind the house and a hippo grazing on our front lawn. We tracked the hippo from a safe distance and then noticed something in the bushes about thirty yards away. We couldn’t be sure what it was, but when there was a sudden and loud rustling of leaves from inside the bush we didn’t wait to find out. At the pace we ran into the house (to be told off by Rebecca) I think we would have stood a good chance of making the Olympic 100m final.
Tomorrow we are going on a chimpanzee trail and a nature walk to see some fruit bats, our first full day of leisure!