Packing up was fairly painless and quite fun as most of our stuff was snapped up by SFL teachers at knockdown prices. Odds and ends were distributed with a draw names from a hat and make a choice system. Ever reliable Bosco arrived at the house and fitted a typically Ugandan amount of furniture on the back of SFL's small truck. We made a couple of trips to school with smaller items in our RAV.
|Teachers Shamim, Janepher and Christine-Alice|
|Teacher Emma, Katuuso Facilities Manager Eddie, Teachers Dennis and Geofrey|
|Teacher Rita choosing carefully|
|Katuuso Facilities Manager Eddie and Head of Tailoring Winnie|
On Tuesday we drove into town. I was both dreading and looking forward to this. Dreading it because it was one last chance for a crash and looking forward to it because I wouldn't have to drive in Uganda again (at least until we come back for a visit in a couple of years' time). As it happened it was a typical drive in with crazy roundabout jams, weird driving behaviour and some swearing on my part.
We had sold the car for a fair price to Roadtrip Uganda. Regular readers of this blog might recognise that name as the company we used for our Land Cruiser hire for safaris when we had visitors. Our RAV will be well looked after by their mechanics (they have heaps of RAVs) and will have a hopefully long life as a safari vehicle visiting Uganda's lovely parks. Roadtrip give their cars names and Jenny suggested they call ours "Sweary Steve". There was a slight hitch over US dollars v Ugandan shillings but we sorted that out and the car was safely handed over.
We had a final dinner with the Kampala SFL office staff and friends on Wednesday night. CEO Annabelle was over from Sydney for a week or two so all the gang were there. The venue was Que Pasa - a Mexican-themed bar/restaurant run by an expat Aussie. Where else would you have your final meal in Uganda?
|These Hornbills watched over us while we packed our suitcases in our Kampala hotel room.|
Two uneventful flights with a night in Doha (40ºC) in between and we were back at my Dad's in Melbourne. Sunday we collected our car, didn't have lunch with son David (we did try!) and Monday we drove home via lunch with my sister Reagan at her new home in Buninyong.
So our 11 months in Uganda have ended and we are home with mixed feelings. It is so nice to be back in our house with our great internet, ugg boots, reliable power, tap water you can drink, neat and tidy streets, shops we understand. We will miss our two schools and will miss seeing their rapid development over the next few years. We will miss the teachers, the kids and support staff. We will miss our good friends in the Kampala office. We will miss the unexpectedly foggy mornings, the sunny, warm afternoons, the torrential rain every few days, the lush green of the farmland and remnant forests, the papyrus swamps, the birds, butterflies, mammals and landscapes of the varied national parks and the lovely safari lodges. We won't miss the driving!
Where to next?