Monday, July 29, 2013

Nile Rafting Vid

So this video was started a bit ago, but with this incredibly slow computer it took a while.  Still not quite done and I haven't even seen the final product but we may not have internet this next week so I had to get it out now....
 here's a link:

Mabira National Forest

Just a quick hour drive in a matatu, and we found ourself in this rainforest wonderland. 
Though, to be honest, an hour in a matatu feels like an eternity. 
It was worth it. 

Mabira forest is constantly being threatened by the sugar industry. A few years ago, President Museveni agreed that they could just chop it all down. Just want to reiterate, this is the rainforest we are talking about. Something about the entire earth's ecology.. I don't know. Seems like a bad idea.
But for now it stands, and the Ugandans fight for its life. So should we.

This little girl just walked up from behind me and grabbed my hand, haha

A grub I think? was about the size of my hand.

The forest spelled an "A" for me!

Our little friends running barefoot through the forest. Made me proud. I wished I was wearing my huaraches sandals when I saw them. Then we had to walk through like gallons of sticky deep mud and i was thankful that I was wearing real shoes. 

sketchy bridges carrying us across the sicky water

Another of many sketchy bridges we crossed

This crazy spiky canon ball sized things were falling from the canopy 

forest friends

I have seen people carry the craziest things on their bikes here. 5 person families, banana trees, innumerable sugar canes, etc.

Last two countries we've lived in (outside US) unite:

My fav parts: 1) all of the monkeys, way up in the canopy of the rainforest, making sounds at us all day 2) butterflies EVERYWHERE- like more than i have ever seen in my life. i felt like i was in Ferngully 3) walking through the villages where all the little kids would run up to us 

sneaky eyes on the way home in our matatu. I would fall asleep for a few minutes, wake up, and she would still be watching me. 

This is what it feels like to ride in a matatu with 22 other humans in an 8 passenger van. To get a realistic feel, imagine a bad case of body odor, ridiculouly bumpy roads, and no air conditioning.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Gadafi Mosque Part II

Views of Kampala from when we were on top of the mosque:

And this nice Muslim fellow singing some of the quran for us:

GOPR9057 from Amber Brown on Vimeo.
Annnnd a bonus:

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Gadafi Mosque Part I

I've been pretty surprised at the amount of Indian influence that exists in Uganda. Islam is not the majority religion, but its pretty high, i think like 30% or so. 
It's very uncommon to see Ugandans with much skin showing-- i'm still having a hard time deciding if its because Islam has become such a part of their culture or if they don't want to be eaten alive by mosquito devils. Maybe some of both. 
Anyway, I'm happy about the Indian influence for one major reason: Chapati. Has kept me alive out here. 
This week we met up with our swiss friends from the Nile trip and visited Gadafi's mosque. 

They had us dress in traditional attire. We asked why muslim women have to cover so much, and why they have to pray in a separate area from men: "Because women are powerful like fire and men are like butter and if they don't do this, the men will burn"  and then proceeded to give, in rather explicit detail, sexual attraction issues that arise when women aren't covered or when they pray (which requires bending over). 

Gadafi is kind of a hero around here (at least with the muslim group) in a way similar to how Mao is a hero for the Chinese. 

I was diggin the design

we walked all the way up the spiral-y inside of that building

Marriage ring where they perform marriage ceremonies. 

Loved all the doors. 

Me with my swiss buds

Back to my old American self! Its just a better look for me. 

Annnd a couple of go pro shots of one of the prayer rooms.