We are in Uganda!

The view from
Our balcony

 

First week in Uganda is done. It was a somehow a rocky start for us. The hospital we were in contact with and thought we were gonna do our interviews at changed their minds so we had to start over. Our contact person took us to a hospital and we met the research officer there who gave us papers to fill in, asked us questions about our bachelor thesis and wanted her to give her our proposal. We left there a bit confused and asked our contact person about the proposal and she told us that it is our project plan. So that night we went home, filled in all the papers and changed some things in the project plan. We met the research officer some days later again at the hospital and gave her everything and at the 28th they going to do a ethical review of our project plan at the hospital. We are hopeful that after that we can start interviewing nurses!

Kampala from one of the hills

We are also trying to get to know our new town Kampala. And get used to all the traffic. Because it is so much traffic and it is always a jam, no matter what time it is. If you have an appointment you need to get an Uber at least 1,5 hour in advance even though the distance isn’t even that far. We have gone with motorcycle taxis a couple of times (here it’s called boda or boda boda), but they drive very fast and so far there have not been any helmets involved for the passengers…

The monkey wants the cookies

Happy monkeys

We went with our contact person and now also friend to the Zoo in Entebbe. It is not just a zoo, it is also a rescue and education center. The coolest animals was the wild monkey though that came to the zoo when it started to get cooler in the afternoon. They were so many and not at all afraid. We bought some cookies to have on the way home but on the way to the car a monkey with a baby saw them from far away and started to run towards Halima who held them! She started to scream and the monkey was persistent to get the cookies and Halima surrender fast! It was hilarious to watch.

Becase there are still time until we can start doing interviews we are going to Nairobi, Kenya. Then we are off for two nights and tree days in Masaai Mara and hopefully getting to see The Big Five!

Wictoria and Carl

Karibu Tanzania!

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”Mambo!”, ”Habari!”, ”Mzima!”, ”Salama dada!”, ”Karibu Tanzania!”

Almost everywhere I go in Dar es Salaam (not least in Mikocheni, where I am staying for the moment) people are greeting me with friendly words. “Hi, how’re you?”, “Peace, sister”, and “Welcome to Tanzania”. It’s hard to pass anywhere in the streets without getting attention.  Even though there are numerous white people here, I get the feeling that some locals are getting curious when they see a white person, a mzungu, and especially the kids. People salute you, and when you respond, many of them get surprised, but excited, and they continue talking in Swahili.

Easter dinner with new rafikisThey welcome you to Tanzania, and want to get to know you. However, far from all Tanzanians speak English. Therefore, to be able to interact more with the locals, I have signed up for two weeks of Swahili classes here in Dar es Salaam. And so far, I have really enjoyed learning Swahili! As soon as I picked up a few words, the Tanzanians have been extra friendly and helpful!

These first days in Dar have been great fun, but also very intense. Tanzania is extraordinary, and very different from Sweden. The weather here is hot, sunny, and humid. The rain can come all of a sudden, and can be very strong. The people look different, and they’re all wearing beautiful and colorful clothes.  The roads are crowded with people, cars, Dala dala’s (busses), bajajis, and motorcycles – and people drive like crazy! Here, you better look twice before you cross the street (and you better be fast)! For the good and the bad, Dar is definitely vibrating!

Overall, Dar es Salaam isn’t what I expected it to be – it’s much better! I’ve already met new people, got several new rafiki (friends), and seen different parts of this huge city. I arrived a bit more than a week ago, but I already feel like I have found another place to call home. Tanzania is beautiful, and I’m certain that this stay will be a mind-blowing experience!

Preparing the food

In addition, last weekend, another MFS-student and I got invited to an Easter celebration with our new Tanzanian friend. We got picked up at our hostel, and drove to her family’s place in a village outside of Dar. In the village, we had a delicious traditional Easter dinner. Our friend’s family was lovely, and they treated us as part of their family. It was interesting to see how Easter is celebrated in a middle-class family here in Tanzania, and we really enjoyed the company and the barbeque.

Now I have to continue with my studies – time travels very fast!

Take care! Kwe heri. 🙂