Thursday, July 7, 2011

Karamoja Unaccompanied: Part III – The Ride Home

I heard the bus honking in the distance, a warning of impending departure. The recommendation was to depart for the bus at about 2:45 and Pastor Philip arranged for Ronald to pick me up and take me there, given the early hour and dark world. Yet it was 2:00. I became quite nervous about the bus leaving without me after I’d heard it honk three or four times. I ventured out into the darkness with only the light from the face of my phone to guide me. I stumbled my way to the bus and found a great seat near the front where the bumps would be less jarring. The bus left at 2:45…whew!

These birds flopped and fought right next to my feet on the way home...
and I didn't even get to eat one.
They thought my purple toenails were berries.
Carrying almost the entire town of people to Soroti, I sat in the seat right behind the door and stairs thinking this would be open space and that I would get a good view and perhaps even a little rest. It was not meant to be. About 12 men stuffed themselves into that small space, which meant they were sitting on the railing in front of me and leaning into my space. I wanted to fuss, but thought about the fact that I actually had a seat and decided otherwise.

From below the seat and behind, jerry cans shoved my feet forward. From the side, a maama’s bags forced my feet to the left. From the front, three sets of feet – some with shoes made from old tires and some with no shoes at all – vied for my little space. Generally they just plunked their feet down on top of mine. No amount of fidgeting would make that space any larger as I recalled Lauren's frequent comments about foot fungus.

Once in Soroti, the multitudes departed and there were only a few left standing. After changing buses I landed next to a man who decided to purchase a few chickens from a hawker (no pun intended) on the way home. Yea! The rest of trip was rather uneventful. I arrived in Kampala in time for a late meeting and made it home on a taxi without too much delay. Praise God for a safe journey.