Uganda 2016 Day Two – Tag Rugby Preparations

It was a very strange night by Ugandan standards. I woke up at 06.30 with the wind blowing a gale, but no thunderstorm – something that I’d not encountered before in Uganda. It was more like UK weather.

I was up by 08.00 and had my first bottle shower of the trip. Believe it or not, the water didn’t actually feel too cold and it was fairly refreshing. I’m not sure I’m going to say that every day but it was really nice to feel clean again. After Mrs Green and Henry had showered and dressed, we walked down to Tembo for breakfast. We were the only customers, so we sat outside overlooking the Kazinga Channel. Henry and I had Ugandan Rolex (for the benefit of Mrs Frost who asked what rolex is: it’s an omelette wrapped in a chapatti. Rolex is slang for rolled eggs!) while Mrs Green had a fruit platter and toast. As we sat there the wind dropped and the sun came out: it was going to be a very hot day.

We left for Kyambura at 10.30 and had a pleasant drive out of the park without seeing a great deal of wildlife other than a few baboons. Next, we had to experience the road up to Kyambura. Regular readers of my blogs from Uganda will remember this road is my least favourite in the world due to the preponderance of potholes. In order to navigate the road, the car has to ‘dance’ through the potholes. This year the road was in worse condition than ever, but there has been a very Ugandan solution to the problem. They have cleared away the foliage away from either side of the road and sent a steamroller over the exposed mud and clay to create a relatively smooth and hard surface. Bizarrely enough, it worked and we made reasonable time in our drive up to Kyambura. There were workmen shovelling dirt into the potholes in the middle of the road, but this is a futile task as the potholes will soon appear again. When I told a workman that they needed to dig up the entire road and start again, he shrugged his shoulders and told me, ‘This is Africa!’

When we arrived at Kyambura we were greeted by Hope, the headteacher of Kyambura Primary School. We proceeded to the school field where Yowasi and teachers from seven other schools were running Tag Rugby training in preparation for tomorrow’s tournament. We were asked to introduce ourselves and to give a brief speech. For Mrs Green and myself, this was quite easy as we are used to doing this as teachers. For Henry, this was more of a challenge, but he did very well.

The others busied themselves taking photos and talking to the teachers while I helped out with some of the training. There was plenty of sporting talent on display and the children responded well to my suggestions. I showed the children a few drills and took part in them as well. This resulted in me turning into a sweaty mass within five minutes and really gasping for air. While I know that I can be fitter than I currently am, it is worth remembering that in western Uganda you are at a much higher altitude and the air is thinner.

Lunchtime was slightly bizarre. Yowasi had the use of a van and asked us to follow him to a restaurant. We were expecting a long drive, but ended up driving fifty yards down the road. I may have to plant a few trees to make up for that. We had tilapia in broth with rice and matoke. This was nice enough, but not as good as grilled tilapia. We went straight back to training which continued until about 15.30. One of the teachers had bought her son with her and he couldn’t have been more than eighteen months old but he was crawling around everywhere with a tag belt fitted to him. I tried to offer him a bit of a brunch bar, but he wasn’t having any of it. I had the chance to talk to Muhudi (the teacher from Kafuro who visited us just before Christmas) about the cob oven and he gave me an answer to Jake Ball’s question. They are intending to use their cob oven to bake various sorts of breads and chapattis.

We arrived back in Mweya at about 17.00 and I had the opportunity to have a quiet beer and to read my book. Despite putting on loads of sun cream and wearing a hat all day, I’d still managed to catch the sun so I also had a little snooze. We headed down to Tembo at 20.30 where we had a good dinner of goat stew (Mrs Green), goat muchomos/kebabs (Henry) and chicken curry (me). Tomorrow morning, we have to be up very early for the tag rugby tournament which starts at 09.00. I will report on this tomorrow.

 

Finally, an answer to Mrs Frost’s question. A boda boda is a motor scooter and the most popular form of transport. In Kampala going on a boda boda ride is almost suicidal as no one wears helmets and everyone is a nutter! In the smaller towns it is less dangerous

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3 Responses to Uganda 2016 Day Two – Tag Rugby Preparations

  1. aburford says:

    Great to learn of your safe arrival and that things have got off to a great start. Looking forward to reading about the rugby tournament. Please let Yowasi know that Farnborough FC are hosting Crystall Palace’s first team for a pre-season friendly next week! This is quite a coup for the club.

  2. Clare Prior says:

    One of my experiences of Africa are that the people are quite superstitious. I’m interested to know what the people of Uganda are superstitious about if anything. Sounds like you’re all having an amazing time ;0)

  3. Mrs Frost says:

    Thank you for answering my questions! The boda boda ride does sound scary, especially with all the potholes!

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