We got up at 3AM to go to the airport. We drove to Frankfurt with now 11 pieces of luggage, because one person of the group brought another bag. Even with the special flight tickets, we were only allowed to have 10. So we took our stuff to the check-in, wondering how that would go. We fully expected to have to pay an extra 200Euros for the bag, in which case we would have left it behind. But to our surprise, the lady at the counter wove us through, with no extra fee whatsoever! It was a mini-miracle :)
The flights went well, but it was long. When we landed in Uganda, passport control took long, and we realized that my mom and another member of our group got scammed on their visa: They paid twice as much as they should have. Corruption is a thing here, and mom will get her money back. But luckily, we all eventually got through.
We walked outside at almost midnight. A few minutes later, Sylvia and some friends met us there with a mini-bus. They got all our 11 bags, plus carry-ons, plus all of us in, then we drove for 45min to the appartment. By the time we got to the room, it was almost 2AM. We just dropped down and slept.
Sylvia came with her family this morning. We had a full breakfast at the 5-star restaurant on the ground floor of the building. The food and the drinks are all very fresh and amazingly good. The people are very friendly and smile a lot, especially when you say hello or look them in the eye.
Then, we went with them to see some of Kampala for the day. We walked through the streets and took a public taxi bus (“Mutatu”) to the fishing docks at lake Victoria. Because we were traveling with locals, we didn’t get any trouble. We took pictures, tasted some fresh sugar cane (delicious!) and had a few cold drinks. Then, we went to visit Sylvia’s house. Their house is tiny, but it is nice. We had a good visit, then Emmanuel (Sylvia’s husband) took us home – just on time: It started raining, and some of the streets flooded a bit. We got though well. Then we went to bed early, because we will go on Safari, tommorow.
The day was very interesting. It showed us that this is a bustling place with both good and bad things. On the one hand, we tasted the freshest foods and saw how much people smile. We enjoyed the company of Sylvia and the others, and overall hospitality from most people we met. But on the other hand, we saw street children, lots of unemployed people and several guards carrying rifles or machine guns. We saw the sewage run in open drains, trash everywhere, and smellt the air, which smells like burnt fuel and the red dust from the ground. In other words, it’s a lively place where people go with the flow, but also chaotic and rough. Apart from some rich neighborhoods, it’s not a place where (white) tourists normally go. But we did go, and we were all glad we did.