Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Ugnada: water

It's hard to believe that the Kimeeza has already come and gone. After a night out celebrating at Tandoori Pavement (Indian for dinner) and Fat Boyz (sports bar) in Kampala, most of the students pulled all-nighters with their new Ugandan friends. We departed for Entebbe Airport at 5:30 a.m. this morning, amidst tears and a fog of exhaustion. After a delayed flight, Katie and I just received notification that the students are all on their way to Heathrow. After lots of cheering and fist pumps in the parking lot, we (Josh, Rebekah, Katie and I) boarded a very lonely bus back to Kampala. On to the next leg of the journey. I am excited to have lots of free time here for the next 10 days or so (I contemplated skipping through the streets to celebrate not having a trail of 13 American students following behind and asking for Immodium AD), but it already feels quite lonely to not have everyone around. I made some amazing new friends and I will really miss them all.

Katie and I checked in at the Sheraton Kampala for some R&R (aka our first hot shower, laundry service, super fast internet, clean down comforters and a gorgeous balcony with a view of Kampala's charming skyline). Kampala really is a manageable city - and a beautiful one, despite the congestion and poverty. While browsing at a supermarket yesterday night, I realized that I really could spend a lot of time here (sorry Mom and Dad but it's true).

So here's the plan for the next week so far:

We'll check out of this glorious hotel tomorrow morning and embark on an approximately 5 hour journey to Sipi Falls, which is about an hour outside of Mbale and apparently has incredible waterfalls and hiking.

My Dad has shared some really exciting updates about his Public Relations project (didn't I tell you dad's my PR guy?). I'm going to be interviewed at the NPR studio in Cleveland on January 31. I will keep you all updated with the URL so you can listen if you're interested (hopefully I won't say "dude", "it's cool" or "and stuff"). Also, WKYC Cleveland may be sending a film crew to Strongsville High School, where I'll be meeting with classes to talk about my experiences and promote the screening of Invisible Children. In addition, I just received an email from an editor at East African Business Week and Katie and I will be meeting with him for an interview next week to discuss GYPA and our programs. I'm thrilled -- and that means I'll be hard at work on presentations for the next few weeks!

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