I’ve just bought another bicycle…
This one is home made and bought from a street seller.It’s a toy.
I like the idea of someone selling crafts and this bike has taken quite a bit of work.Wire work and some cloth work. Design, marketing and selling.
It’s hot for me today,and it’s also hot on the streets for the locals.I’m now sitting in an air conditioned Internet cafe where it’s comfortable and I can rest.Day in and day out the seller of my bicycle is smiling, smiling in his weariness of making a living in the overhead sun.
I’m ashamed to say it crossed my mind to ask to pay less than asked for.Silly western woman being ripped off.But I love this quirky bike for whoever, whenever and I need to pay a fair price..in my exchange rate. And he still cannot afford the air conditioned cafe
I saw a mouse.
It was big.It wasn’t a rat.
I did not scream.
28 Jan 2015
Culture shock always sounds so negative. A different culture is expected to bring new experiences,people, sounds, tastes.And new is the force that heightens awareness,stimulates the brain builds the memories and having accomplished these, blends into the familiar. A change in culture whether holiday, work or a visit to another side of our city is energising for the mind.So the shock bit is actually very positive.
Disconnection, when we are so used to digital connection can be a shock. A prepaid bundle of texts failing to operate, no signal,power cuts that took the IT batteries down to dead, exhausted credit and a new phone crashing are the last week’s reasons for disconnection shock.
In a few years our instant connections have become a norm, and the
isolation of disconnection shock has become painful.The intense initial irritation at non functioning or accessible IT can be seen from adults to very small children,so we may expect disconnection to be jolting.But disconnection can be used to heighten awareness,look around for the new and to learn how restless constant IT connection has made our minds. The shock of IT disconnection shock is a positive and one where intuition begins to flourish and the mind can be constructive and restful, prayerful and contemplative.Finding new connections .
21 JAN 2015
And so we arrived in Uganda. My luggage and I. The beautiful bicycle all in the box.A big thank you to KLM for waiving the fee as a charitable gift. And to the packer.
(Just for the record re the “dwellers all in time and space ” post, my plane neighbour was upgraded and left me to enjoy a seat for two.Not complaining that his penchant for a violent film didn’t distract my reading)
Uganda is a place of warmth. Not just the equatorial sunshine, but the kindness of her people. So many people give such heartfelt greetings and
” Welcome ” is their word. It’s hard not to take a step back and feel undeserving of their words,smile and kindness.
Some have invited me into their houses in the few days I have been here and whatever the home style, the welcome has been humbling. “Welcome” tumbles off the lips of strangers as I struggle with quelling a sense of intrusion into their privacy.The visits are deeply appreciated as the pastor of the church his team and I call in on neighbours in the community just saying what a church is about. And they have a lot on offer.Caring, feeding educating, healing,medicines,support and salvation. Whatever the worldview of the folks we have seen there has never not been an active “Welcome “. Europe. Let’s learn.
Hub airports. People watching can leave many questions. Where have they come from? Where are they going? Who is alert and who is struggling as they exit into the new time zone. Who is connecting quickly and who has a long long wait?
It’s very difficult to tell, but the numbers just show how mankind likes to connect and connect in person. Skype can be very useful and a great time and money saver, but face to face human time builds a more complete relationship.
To those underway on the journey,creed and race,language and dress seem less of an issue than for the settled.The journeying binds us together in an area of our insecurity. Activity and moving seems good and necessary for the human psyche and soul.Lets take Jesus’ words as we love our neighbour as ourselves and diminish our differences as we journey.
( and when I next write I’ll sure let you know if my travelling neighbour squashes into My space on this journey.. May need extra grace if that happens)
Got it all done … luggage squeezed and the zips all holding . Bike in the box and not forgotten to deflate tyres and remembered the pump .
Thank you to the very many of you who have donated to Matugga. The generosity and kindness of strangers is something that holds human kind together. Kate Adie, a newsreporter found it in the harshest of places.
So take heart , much bad news there is , but there are far more human souls reaching out to do good to those they know and to those they will never meet .So be kind to those you meet and be generous and be blessed. We can all do a little little bit to improve the world. Why question kindness? Thank you to all of you