I’m In Africa!….Really?

Well, I have taken a bit of a detour from my regularly scheduled Austril-Asia expedition.  I am on the most ridiculous transit route that I may ever take in my life.  It spans 3 days, in which I have no real possibility to sleep, and am in to may different time zones that jet lag can’t even begin to describe how much my body hates me.  I’m going to end up in the middle of no where Africa.  Uganda to be exact.  I guess this is why I left the states….some real travel adventure.  I may be over my head on this one.  Luckily I have a guide.

The Itinerary

Travel Day 1:
Wake up at 6 am. catch a bus at 7:00 am into Queenstown to catch the bus to Dunedin Airport (4 hours).  Sit in Dunedin airport for another 4 hours to catch a flight to Auckland (1.5 hours).  Stay at Auckland Airport over night.  Tried to check in the night before for my Singapore leg of trip. No Go. End up sleeping on a bench…well not really sleeping…. in middle of airport.

Travel Day 2:
Wake up at 4:45 am.  Flight to Singapore is at 12 p.m.  No one to check me in until 9 am.  Finally check in and head to Star Alliance lounge for breaky. Get on flight to Singapore (10 hours)

Travel Day 2.5 or 3….have no idea what day it is at this point:
Land in Singapore 6:05 p.m. Its hot….My body just got used to winter and cold!  Feel like the bottom of a taxi cab.  Run around airport looking for the right terminal and lounge to hang out at for 8 hours waiting to catch flight to Johannesburg at 2 am.  Thank god I find the right lounge and it stays open to 1:30 am.  I eat and take a shower…..oh my god, excellent!  Not sure how I would do this without being able to use the airline lounges.  I’m going to loose this privilege come new year… going to be impossible to go back to regular travel….I’m scared.

Travel Day 3 or 4
: I don’t know.
Get on flight to J-Berg at 2 a.m. (10 hour flight).  Arrive in Johannesburg airport 7 a.m. and proceed to South African Air check in for 2 p.m. flight.  Find Star Alliance lounge and hang out for 6 hours.  Finally get on flight to Entebbe, Uganda.  Arrive at 7:30 p.m. on who knows what day, and at some time Auckland time….I have no idea.  I can barley walk, haven’t slept in possibly 4 days, am stinky and have travel funk all over me.  I’m almost out of clean clothing already and I’m in the middle of no where Africa.  Not sure what I got myself into…..

When I arrive in Entebbe, Uganda I filled out arrival and entry permission papers and find out that to pay my $50 USD for a visa, they won’t take a credit card, so I need to find an ATM, and immigration has my passport until I pay.  I walk to find an ATM as I do I past the baggage claim area and decide to grab the one bag I checked.  Of course it never shows up…..my bag has gone missing.  So I run over to the baggage claim desk and have to fill out a claim.  Mean while I know my friend  is waiting to meet me out in the airport entrance, and I still haven’t found an ATM to get my passport back.  Its a bit of an unnerving start.  But it could be worse.

I get money, and my passport, but come to find out the customs officer ripped me off by 18,000 USH ( Ugandan Shilling) ($8 USD).  I’m a little amazed that the customs officer ripped me.  I got everything sorted and am still waiting to find out where in the world my bag is.  Luckily being the pessimist that I am, I planned for my bag to go missing and packed provisions on my carry-on,  along with all the essential medications.  I really hope they find the bag though, a I brought goodies like toothpaste and wine with me which are valuable commodities here.

I’m here in Kampala, Uganda, Smack in the middle of East Africa.  I am hear because I have a once in a lifetime chance to visit a friend that has been living here for 1.5 years in the American Peace Corps.  How many times does the opportunity arise to visit someone that can be a guide in Africa.  Not many for me, well probably only once to be exact.  That is why I am here, to experience rural Africa and live amongst the Locals in there village, with my friend Marcy.

I will be posting pictures and stories about Uganda for the next month or so.  I am going to try and write about the place, and areas, an then on culture and finally on the life of a peace core volenteer.  I really want to show the daily and weekly routines of living in rural Africa.

Until I have internet access again.

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4 responses to “I’m In Africa!….Really?

  1. DOUBLE WOW!!! I can’t wait to see th epix and read the stories. I think of Uganda as synonymous with the violence and corruption of Idi Amin! Hope it’s better than that.
    Babs

  2. GOOD FOR YOU!!!! You are going to have a blast…. you always do. Take lots of pic’s & update when you can. Be careful! Tell Marcy I said hello. 🙂

  3. interesting im considering going to Uganda and this give some some sort of insight into whats its like there… thanks for making the effort to post this.

  4. I hope you end up going. If you need to ask some questions or would like some first hand knowlege, I can put you in contact with friends that have been living there for 2 years. Good luck!

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