16 May 2016

Trip to Uganda; a visit to Makandwa village

This 'mzee' (older gentleman) is a fun-loving money changer at the Kenya-Uganda Busia border.
Both times we crossed he affectionately referred to me as his grand-daughter, adding that he's 86 years old.

Shortly after crossing into Uganda, a storm rolled in. The front window of the matatu (where I was seated) didn't work.
I was given a piece of cardboard to hold over the gaping hole... in an attempt to keep the rain out!

For several years Margaret and I have talked about me visiting her home village, the place where she grew up in the Busoga Kingdom of Uganda. At long last we made it happen! After leaving the border at Busia, we traveled west for about an hour. When we alighted at the Busesa stage, the storm had reduced to a light rain. During our 45-minute boda boda ride, to the village of Makandwa, we got a bit wet... it's not really possible to use an umbrella on the back of a motorbike! Margaret's brother and sister-in-law were happy to see us when we arrived just before darkness descended.

Margaret grew up eating Jackfruit and loves it.

The Jackfruit grows in tropical lowlands. Its fruit is the largest tree-borne fruit, reaching as heavy as 80 lb in weight, 35 inches in length, and 20 inches in diameter. One Jackfruit tree can produce 100-200 fruits in a year.

I ate half of my large piece, but Margaret finished all of hers.

Jackfruit is composed of hundreds of individual flowers (or bulbs). To eat it, one grabs hold of a bulb and tears it out, all-the-while getting your hands sticky. The flavor is comparable to a combination of apple, pineapple, mango, and banana. It has a distinctive, sweet and fruity aroma and is high in vitamin C, Potassium, and other nutrients.

Notice the Jackfruit tree in the foreground.

It rained much of the time we were at Makandwa, during which I did some reading.

Margaret's sister-in-law and two young ladies entertained us during the rain by singing some Christian songs.

Left: Margaret's brother and sister-in-law, Simon and Joy (our hosts). Center: Margaret, with JB behind.
Back right: Simon and Joy's son (the one that drove me when Margaret and I left). Front right: Lydia, a neighbor.

The day we left, which is when I filmed these two videos, we only had a 30-minute motorbike ride (instead of the 45 minute ride on the day we had arrived). Luckily the sun was shining and there was no rain on this second ride.

From the stage at Iganga, I boarded a bus to Jinja and Margaret went to Kampala. A few days later, I also went to Kampala and we eventually reconnected for the trip back to Eldoret.

Margaret bought several pineapples at the border, as Uganda's are considered to be much better than Kenya's.

While traveling by matatu, we both purchased a snack through the windows.
Margaret opted for roasted banana and I had roasted beef on-a-stick.

A beautiful sunset as we arrive back in Kenya.
We were traveling east, but I took the photo in the matatu's rear-view mirror, which pointed west.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

So glad you got to visit Margaret's home village in Uganda. Enjoyed all your pictures and posts. Makes me feel as if I had been there - almost :)
Praying, Nancy S.