Time in Uganda

Let's Get Started

OK. I think it is about time to populate this blog with accounts of the 2010 Onalaska Church of Christ / Good Shepherd Lutheran Church mission trip to Uganda. I have access to two journals and will create posts from these.

To start with, there will be day-by-day entries following the intinerary published below. Whenever I add the posts for a particular day, I'll change the color of the text in the list from gray to green. So, you'll know how far along we are.

With that, it is time to post... Updated May 15, 2010

The 2010 Trip - Day by Day

Day 1 ~ Thursday False start due to weather in La Crosse and Chicago

Day 2 ~ Friday La Crosse to Chicago and on the way to Brussels

Day 3 ~ Saturday Brussels to Kigali, Rwanda and on to Entebbe Arrive in Uganda at about 10:30 p.m.

Day 4 ~ Sunday Drive to Tororo; church service in the afternoon

Day 5 ~ Monday Bike repair service project at church and school; Visit to Aturukuku Primary School

Day 6 ~ Tuesday Visit Patewo Primary School; Lunch at Sam's mom's home; Attend service at Butaleja church

Day 7 ~ Wednesday Visit the Mbale Mission; Attend service at Kachumbala church

Day 8 ~ Thursday Visit prison near Tororo with Fabian; Women's program at Milca's

Day 9 ~ Friday Follow-up meeting at Aturukuku; Drive to Kampala

Days 10, 11, 12 ~ Saturday through Monday Visit Murchison Falls National Park and the Ziwa Rhino sanctuary; return to Kampala

Day 13 ~ Tuesday Shopping in Kampala; Depart for Brussels at 11:40 p.m.

Day 14 ~ Wednesday Brussels to Chicago to La Crosse; Home!

Saturday, May 15, 2010


Entry from Eileen's journal
Entry from Jack's journal follows
Monday, January 17
We stop at the Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary on our way back to Kampala. Idi Amin did away with the national parks during his regime so rhinos were poached to extinction here. There are a few at the zoo in Kenya and that is it. The refuge has two from Disney and 5 from the Kenyan zoo. Three babies have been born, including the newest named Obama. His mother is American and his father Kenyan. We get to view Bella and her calf Agusta. Awesome.

Entry from Jack's journal
Monday, January 17
As Eileen tells us in her short journal entry, this is the day we traveled back to Kampala. Along the way, we went by a settlement where there must have been a water source near the road -- there were a number of people and a lot of the ubiquitous plastic yellow containers used to carry water from wells. I wrote a short meditation about this hauling of water, something completely foreign to most of us in the U.S. Following that, some more pictures from the day.

If I had to carry water
Yellow containers.
Just for carrying water;
Loaded on bikes, carried on heads. Mostly by children.
Taken from boreholes. Or muddy ponds they call wells.
Water I would avoid. If I could.

What would my day be like
without water, save what I could carry
in yellow containers
from questionable sources?

What would yours be like?

Small child, small container

They're everywhere

Sweeping at the entrance to the park

Road hazards, Ugandan style

Ankole on the road to Kampala

At the Ziwa Rhino Refuge


Know your rhinos

Lunch at the sanctuary

On the road to Kampala
Apparently, you can ride anywhere

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Where the Wild Things Are

Entry from Eileen's journal
Entry from Jack's journal follows
Sunday, January 16
Happy Birthday to my Lydia, 10 years old!! Ismael hires a soldier to ride with us through the park. I make an extensive list of animals and birds. All of us are beat up by the rough ride. My back has not felt this bad in months. I could not hold on tight enough to give myself stability on the rough roads.

As you can see, Eileen did not write much this day, but as noted in her journal entry, she kept a comprehensive list of all of the birds and animals we encountered on our trip, a list that grew significantly during the drive and river trip in Murchison Falls National Park. Here it is:

Kobe/ waterbuck
Jackson hartebeest
Water buffalo
Black and white colobus
Bushbuck [stripe on back]

Tawny eagle
Brown hornbill
Black kite
Shakra hawk
Little egret
Medium egret
Bateleur eagle
Guinea fowl
Crested crane
Rap wing
Spur-winged plover
Shadow-billed stork
Swallow tailed bee eater
Malachite kingfisher
Pied wagtail
Grey-headed kingfisher
Egyptian goose
African jacana
Grey heron
Spur-winged goose
Yellow-billed stork
Pied kingfisher
African fish eagle
Red-throated bee eater
Bolarus heron

Entry from Jack's journal
Sunday, January 16
As already noted, I did not have journal entries for the safari part of the trip. However, I did, after the trip, write a few meditations, one of which I'll share here, followed by some pictures from this amazing day in the park.

Lessons from the Kingfisher
Brightly colored, he does not exactly blend in.
Like a muzungu in Uganda.
He is what he is. And he will do kingfisher things, while standing out
in blue, red, black, brown and white ~ his kingfisher colors.
A lamp is not brought to put under a basket Matthew 5:15

And he flies where he must. To do what he needs to do.
Uganda. Murchison Falls National Park. The border with the Congo.
These mean nothing to him. And to us? Barriers.
But only if we let them be.
There is neither Jew nor Greek, ... Galatians 3:28

On Safari...