Uganda 2017 Day 14: The two Glorias

The premise for today was very simple. Yowasi would arrange for Gloria from P6 in Kafuro to travel down to Katunguru from where Mrs Green and I would pick her up and drive into Mweya. We would go to Tembo where Joshua, the head chef, would take her under his wing.  Gloria would show Joshua the pizza and bread roll recipes that we had used at Kafuro last week and everything would be wonderful.

The complications began last night. Yowasi messaged me to let me know that Gloria’s parents weren’t happy that she travel without a friend. This was fair enough! I told Yowasi that this was fine and he replied that Gloria would be bringing her friend…..Gloria! Well, at least there wouldn’t be any problem remembering names.

The next problem started at 7.30am this morning. Joshua rang me to tell me that he wouldn’t be at work today so to bring the girls tomorrow. I told him that I was unable to do this and it would have to be today. I would go down to Tembo and speak to Kim, Joshua’s assistant and Bibian, the restaurant manager. Joshua was happy with this, so Mrs Green and I left a message for Calum and went for breakfast at Tembo. Kim and Bibian could not have been any more accommodating. Everything was fine and the girls would be made more than welcome.

With this sorted out and having had a couple of slices of marmite on toast (the last of Mrs Green’s marmite supply) we went to see Ronald the tourism manager to see if we could get the girls on the Kazinga Channel cruise as a treat/reward. Ronald ummed and aaahed but agreed and said that Mrs Green could join them as their chaperone..Result!

We drove down to Katunguru anxious to be on time to pick up the girls at 9.30am. Just before we got to the park gate we ran into a herd of 40 elephants. It was spectacular to view them so closely and Mrs Green was snapping away with my camera, but it did constitute a ten minute delay. When we eventually got to Katunguru, we needn’t have worried because it was another ten minutes until the girls arrived. This gave us time to buy a couple of bags of flour.

Gloria and Gloria looked pleased to see us although they didn’t say very much. Gloria 2 was wearing her Conservation Cup winners medal even though it had been awarded nearly two weeks ago. It just goes to show how much Ugandans value things. I can’t help but think that in the UK where we get medals for doing just about anything, they become disposable.

We reached Tembo and the girls were straight into action cutting and chopping. We made the pizza dough and then the tomato sauce while Kim and his team watched. While the tomato sauce cooked down and Gloria 2 stirred, Mrs Green and Gloria made the dough for the bread rolls.

Both the pizza and the bread rolls took ages to cook in the Tembo oven, but they both tasted delicious. Yowasi had given the girls some Kafuro honey to put on the bread and it was amazing. Everyone in the Tembo kitchen loved it.

From there, we drove to the Kazinga Channel jetty. There are now three boats available as UWA took delivery of a new boat earlier this year. Mrs Green and the Glorias got on the first boat while Calum and I waited to say goodbye. We were then told that there was room on the third boat if we’d like to enjoy the cruise. Within a blink of an eye Calum and I were in our seats. It wasn’t all good news. We were sharing the boat with six American families all with young children who were determined to run around and make as much noise as possible while their parents sat and did nothing. In effect we’d become a mobile crèche. The good news (for Calum at least as Mrs Green had my camera and binoculars) was that we had unobstructed views of all of the animals and it was easy to take photos. We didn’t see any elephants (you can’t be too lucky) but there were plenty of hippos and water buffalo as well as variety of birds. Calum and I amused ourselves by picking out African fish eagles, who mate for life and control territory of about 1km. We had quite a scare at the end of the cruise when we hit some sleeping hippos who ran out of the water very quickly and the resulting swell rocked the boat.

When we reached land, we drove the two Glorias back to Katunguru where they were picked up by the boda – boda driver. They thanked all of us and said that they had a really nice day. We were back home at about 6.15pm.

The next two days are a bit up in the air at the moment, but it looks as if I will be picking up letters to take back to the UK tomorrow with a trip to Rwenzori Mountain park on Saturday.

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