July 21 -22, 2009
By Haley McCue
On July 21 Team U left on our adventure to Uganda. The first problem that occurred happened before we had even left. Chrissy was packing the night before and realized that her passport was missing from its spot in the family file cabinet. Turning the house upside down did not help, and it could not be found. It was a late night for the Krumms and McWilliams, hoping to find some type of solution. The next morning H4KI’s Julie Eaton worked through the problem. Chrissy has to get her passport rushed to her and travel to meet us on the 24th. Thankfully another H4KI adult traveler will be on her connecting flights and help her through the arrival process and drive her to us in Tororo. We miss you Chrissy,a nd get wait to see you ASAP! Thanks for helping to get her to us, Julie. We were all really upset and are sad she will miss the first few days…but know she will be with us soon.
We were all so excited to begin our journey! We were all well prepared for our 30+ hour flights. We had all the physical things we needed, but we still weren’t exactly sure what we had gotten ourselves into. By our second connecting flight in Amsterdam, we were all so exhausted we were literally laying on the floor of the airport. However, we were pretty amazed with how luxurious their airport was. It had a full indoor shopping mall with name brand [crazy expensive] stores. Too bad the bathrooms were not as impressive, but we all know this trip is not about great restrooms! On our planes, we had met some very nice and curious international travelers, as our shirts and name badges opened conversations with a lot of people. A number of people seemed interested in our project and were amazed at all of the effort we put into it. One surgeon on his way to Northern Uganda even stated how hard it is on your body to fly internationally and that you have to be really committed to what you’re doing. We believe him!!!! Before we landed, we had endless meals and snacks which was a weird aspect because we were eating more than many Ugandans probably do in a week. At the end of the day, after we landed at 9pm, July 22, at the Entebbe airport in Uganda, we all agreed that flying was probably going to be one of the hardest parts. We had a few more adventures before the night was over. First Ross, Andy, and I had to climb in through our bus window to look for my lost suitcase for over twenty minutes. Of course, as I was walking upstairs I then realized I lost my backpack with all my essentials in it. As we walked back to the bus, found it, then were leaving, I happened to trip in the meantime and rip a huge hole in the seat of my pants. It was very funny, especially since we were all delirious by that point. Then, because the hotel got overbooked accidentally they tried “shipping away” Sharon, Claire, and Emily to a completely different hotel. At first, they were told it was just a different building operated by the same hotel, but when the van took them out of the gates and all the way across town they were confused. They figured out the problem, and were able to come back and stay at the original hotel where we were all together. We’ve been told about the motto “TIA” (This is Africa!) and that it runs its own unique way….this experience was a TIA!
We look forward to our first look at Uganda in the sunlight, and getting to interact with Ugandans at last!