Monday, July 25, 2011

Market Day in Paidha

Joel snuck up behind me as I was singing with the children. What a wonderful surprise. He and Augustine are nearly inseparable but this is the first time I’ve seen Joel in Paidha and it’s been at least two months since seeing him at all. After some time of catching up – particularly because Joel has found a woman he wishes to marry and I needed to hear the details – we set out to begin our program for the day.

Heading into the crowded market was a bit unnerving after having my wallet snatched in Kampala. Wall to wall women sat patiently on the ground with their matoke bananas and avocados. They waited for the truck drivers to pick their goods for purchase so they could be shipped into Kampala markets and made ready for sale.

Augustine and Innocent, a native Paidhan ministry helper, are not used to caring for mzungu in the same way Gabriel and Henry are, but I’d learned a few things from those two wise men. I asked Augustine and Innocent to sandwich me. Augustine led the way and Innocent followed behind me. They may not have been as alert as would have been helpful, but they at least deterred possible evildoers.

Deeper into the market, we passed through the stalls of meat. Raw meat hanging by rusty hooks or laying on dirty benches…the thought of vomiting entered my mind a few times. I am happy to avoid thinking of such things when enjoying the roasted meat served at meals.

After nearly being plowed over by a fast moving guy hauling some giant and heavy sack of something round, we examined the African pancake. They looked tempting and, well, I had to try one. Beyond nasty isn’t quite kind enough. A quick greeting to a pastor also working as a tailor, and we went on our way to visit the place Augustine, Joel, and Innocent call home.