Thursday, March 31, 2011



Today I stumbled upon two gems of my iTunes library: Hello Heartbreak (Michele Williams, Unexpected) and He About to Lose Me (Britney Spears, Femme Fatale); one semi-oldie and one very newie. Both goodies.

I've raved that Unexpected was fantastically, unexpectedly amazing. Hello Heartbreak, with

I got a strange connection to pain
I can't seem to walk away from hurt

sums up my masochistic tendencies pretty well.

Alliterately put: Femme Fatal is fantastic, fabulous and phenomenal. He About to Lose Me (bonus track on deluxe version) gives us a taste of that deep Britney voice that we love and don't get to hear so much in her recordings. Rodney Jerkin's production is smooth and not over done. I'm not in a situation at this point where the lyrics speak to me, but I love the sound of this song. I can always pretend that someone by the bar keeps staring at me, threatening the situation of the person I (hypothetically) am in a relationship with. Touching hands with someone seriously beautiful sounds like a great idea. Where are you?

Wednesday, March 30, 2011



If ever a lemon of a Mac was manufactured, mine is it. The computer I type on at the moment has very little remaining from the computer that was delivered to me in April of 2009. Straight out of the box the track pad needed replacing. The next piece of hardware to go was the SuperDrive, then it was the logic board. To their credit, Apple did cover all of these repairs; it only cost me getting to an Apple store to begin with and some time lost on my computer because they had to send it off for a few days. The power cord snapped last month; luckily I was in the US as could replace that immediately. Today, my monitor bit the dust. It was not a pretty sight to see, literally.

Like a solution sent straight from the gods of Mt. Olympus, Elite Computers in downtown Kampala one again came to my rescue. The guys at Elite are like technological demigods: they find solutions that work, but do not break the bank. I fought my way downtown after school this afternoon, almost 5:00pm—rush hour—and did not have much hope for a quick, affordable solution; my Greek chorus would have been spewing out expletives. After explaining to the Elite technician my troubles and hearing his most expensive solution, I battled my way to a very reasonable price for a new screen and the labour. What a fantastic job he did!

I watch what I type now with the images appearing better than they have in long time, which leads me to suspect the previous monitor was biting the dust for a long time, building up to today.

Now all I need to do is replace the keyboard and the hard drive, and I'll have a new computer.

I'm so thankful. Hmmm... I wonder if to express my appreciation I must travel to make burnt offerings at Mt. Olympus, or if roasting goat over charcoal in Uganda will suffice.

What about rolling sushi at Angela’s?

An amazing hump day night idea!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

It's Britney and Nina, Bitch!

It's Britney and Nina, Bitch!

Found in my inbox this morning:


That's right, folks, Ms. Spears' new album, Femme Fatale, officially dropped on the world today. Femme Fatale is right up there with Black Out, being one of Britney's most consistently fantastic albums. While I love me some Brit, I cannot pretend to be a fan of E-mail My Heart, Bombastic Love, Shadow or Mmm Papi. None like those on Femme Fatale. You can dance the entire album away and not rush to the skip button for the songs that don't fit. Jody Rosen's review in Rolling Stone magazine says this "may be Britney's best album; certainly it's her strangest." And in this case, strange is definitely a plus.

New music from Britney, how could this day get any better? How about Black Swan finally made it to the Cineplex in Kampala. At last I could go see it, as it should be seen, in a proper theatre. I watched a bootleg DVD copy over a month ago, loved it, and knew it would be a gazillion times better on the big screen. And it was.

Black Swan is no simple film, and I believe it must be seen more than once to really appreciate how brilliant it is. While I agree with all the praise Natalie Portman received for her portrayal of Nina, I think her mother was hauntingly portrayed by Barbara Hershey. She was so creepy. Images in my mind of her and Sayid from Lost making out probably added to the creep-out factor.

Humour me a bit. Natalie Portman and Britney Spears connection beyond my blog: in the early 90s they were both understudies for Laura Bell Bundy (the original Elle Woods in Legally Blonde the Musical and that rich blond chick that wanted her fiance investigated before they got married on an episode of Veronica Mars, season 2) in the Off-Broadway show Ruthless!.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Mother 'Effin' Monster

Mother 'Effin' Monster
Up Dem Damn Hills

The top five songs on my iTunes playlist for yesterday's triathlon were:
  1. Monster (Kanye West, Jay-Z, Nicki Minaj). Nothing helped me pedal up those hills more than spouting out, "I'm a mother 'effin' monster!" And my growls and gunts would have lead many bystanders to believe it was true. Yes, Nicki's cameo is amazing and she deserves the recognition as the best contribution of to a single of 2010.
  2. Roman's Revenge (Nicki Minaj featuring Eminem). Yes, another Minaj. I said before that Pink Friday was a great album for running. The aggression of this song can stir something strong within. No matter how tired you may be, this song will give you the energy to keep truckin'; you'll feel like a dungeon dragon!
  3. I Wanna Go (Britney Spears). This song is so fantastic; probably my favourite on Femme Fatale. You don't have to wait to take on you freak until 'tonight'. You can do it on the running trail. In fact, that would be hotter. Love the whistles.
  4. Dancing On My Own (Robyn). She quickly became one of my favourite pop artists with her Body Talk albums last year. Being 'in the corner, watchin' you kiss her' pisses me off and makes want to impress you more by 'givin' it my all'. Robs, we've all been the one not seen and the one not taken home. I feel ya.
  5. Emancipate (Kelis). Yes, I, too, was in route.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Lake Victoria Triathlon 2011

Lake Victoria Triathlon 2011

I spent last night in Entebbe to be sure that I was well rested and ready for this morning's triathlon. It had become tradition for some friends and I to camp at the Entebbe Sailing Club the night before the tri; however, this year the triathlon changed venues to the Lake Victoria Hotel, so my camping tradition had to change.

Change is often good. Considering the powerful storm that blew in last night around 2:00am, I am very thankful that I was nice and warm and dry at the Sunset Motel. It was also quite wonderful to have a light breakfast of fruits and boiled eggs ready for me at 6:00.

This year, the distance of the bike portion of the 'Olympic' category was increased by 10km to 40km. The swim remained at 1000m and the run also stayed 10km. A sprint distance was also introduced (swim of 400m, cycle of 20km and run of 5km). Another big change was completing the swimming portion in a pool instead of the lake. Because of the risk of Bilhazia from swimming in Lake Victoria, may people have shied away from the triathlon in the past. I think the organizers' efforts to attract more participants paid off as there were about 120 participants this year.

The spirit of the day is what attracts me most to this event. While it is a competition, that really takes a back seat, and the people who participate enjoy the sport and the physical and psychological challenges that come along with it. It's really a very social day: a day to get out of the city and have fun with people you might only see once a year at the triathlon.

Before I left for the event this morning, I made sure to coat my body with sunscreen--a very wise choice in this equatorial location with intense sun. Yep, I coated me body pretty well, but omitted my face. Imagine what I looked like after 40km on a bike and a 10km run while wearing sunglasses and later a headband. I'm hoping the red patches with fade and even out with the white splotched left around my eyes and across my forehead. It's just too funny, like a scene from more than one 80s comedy film.

March has been an active/fit month for me. Last weekend were the Alliance Francaise Fracophonie Run and The 7 Hills Run. Today was the Lake Victoria Triathlon. Next Sunday is The International School of Uganda's annual charity run. It's only 10km, but it's an exceptionally hilly and difficult 10km. It should be fun!

Associating with fantastic swimmers to pretend I'm a fantastic swimmer as well, psyching myself up before the start.

Documented: The first time I ever put on a swim cap.

I took along my cheering squad.

Trying to look strong at the finish.

The look of relief: finished!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Eve of the Tri

Eve of the Tri

Thai curry dinner.
Sleep nearby at the Sunset.
Morning will come fast.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Significant Difference

Significant Difference

It's amazing the difference a day can make. I'd like to express that mathematically, but I haven't figured out how to yet. To complicate the equation, I could include an encouraging SMS as a superscript to represent how one can exponentially improve a day.

Today was a good day. Tonight was utterly fabulous.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Oh, Katy...

Oh, Katy...

I thought for sure I'd blogged in the past about my general dislike for Katy Perry. After conducting a search, I found out I have not. There's always been something about her that just irks me; it always feels like she tries to hard for attention; and it's not always funny. That being said, I think I'm having a change of heart, Katy.

The answer to your question,

Do you ever feel, feel so paper thin,
Like a house of cards,
One blow from caving in?

is yes. Yes, today I do feel paper thin. I cannot say that I've ever felt like a plastic bag, Katy. I hate them, so to me that would be über self-loathing, and I don't do that. But paper thin. Today. Yes.

Katy, thanks for your vote of confidence. I might not feel much like it now, but I am a firework. And Katy I'll think of you when I let my colours burst, become brighter than the moon and all that when I go 'boom!' But not today. Remember, the one blow from caving in part?

Thanks for validating the space I do not waste.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011



I was back in action today... perhaps too much. After quite an active day at work, I had cross country club, so that was an easy-breeze (if slightly hilly) 2.6km run with the kids. Then I talked myself out off, then into again going to the pool for 1100m. After that was a fantastic hour and a fifteen minutes of Pilates with Pascale. She's such an amazing instructor. I love her classes, and when I come back after taking time off, I wonder, "What was I thinking?" And not just because it hurts like hell to get one's core back in shape. I just feel so good during and after a workout in her class.

Strangely, I did not feel at all exhausted after these three workout; I attribute that to endorphins. Still, I think it was a bit too much and do not know what I was thinking. I have a triathlon to compete in on Sunday, I should probably be resting and carb-loading this week. Plus, I'll probably feel like a train wreck, hungover, after this natural high finally wears off.


Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Day of Rest

Day of Rest

Rest days suck. Yep.

Actually, I was kind of looking forward to this one considering it's been a week since I last took one, and from Saturday to Monday, I ran approximately 40km. I envisioned myself coming home for a nap and then going to Cineplex at 7:00pm to see some eye-candy movie that would require no effort on my part to be entertained.

Flash to reality: I put in extra time at work, but still left feeling that my head was just above water. I came home to wait on a plumber that took about two hours to do a shoddy job. By that time it was too late to make the movie. Plan B: failure. Plan C: failure. Lately my free time really has not been free; it has revolved around my running and other workouts. When I don't run, I go to Pilates or to the pool. When I don't either of those... I'm lost, I guess. And that's frustrating.

I did get to doze a little in the sitting room recliner, but a hacksaw on metal does not provide an ideal lullaby.

The evening clouds were not without their silver linings. I was able to finish up a book on iPhoto (my first one) that I've been working on since January. I think it's ready for printing, but I want to give it one more edit tomorrow after my brain has been off of it for a few hours. Another great part of the evening was eating sun-dried tomato and green olive bread with Camembert cheese. Delicious. No guilt. One of the perks of all that damn running.

Before the sucky evening without a workout, I had a pretty good day. One of the day's highlights was the discussion I lead at staff meeting on intrinsic versus extrinsic rewards. I'm a big Alfie Kohn fan. His books always get me thinking; they force me to turn a mirror myself and question my practices as an educator. I was able to use some videos I found on YouTube (which as recently been blocked at school), and advocate the value of YouTube in the classroom. That's me, rocking the boat.

But did anyone listen?

Monday, March 21, 2011



The internet is so slow tonight, I really cannot get much done, and that includes my blog post. Thank you Orange. I'm at home ready for be, so I cannot let my frustration explode and shower down on you as debris like I did yesterday at breakfast after running 20km and having the waitress, after telling us there was no cheese and no cream cheese, come back from the kitchen and tell us there were no eggs. Me, sticky with sweat and mud, marching into the kitchen area of a restaurant demanding to know why there are no 'effing' eggs when the restaurant is no more than 300 meteres from two 24-hour supermarkets is a sight I wish that no one ever has to witness again.

The day went by so quickly, so I guess that means I was pretty busy. It was also an eye opener to how far I have let myself get behind. My organisational skills and work ethic must improve or I might just sink.

I had a good run, about 7km. Tomorrow will be my day off. I think I'll go see a movie.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Sushi Rolls, 7 Hills, Selena Gomez, Garden Art

Sushi Rolls, 7 Hills, Selena Gomez, Garden Art

My weekend can be summarised by these eight words.

Sushi Rolls
Angela had the most amazingly fun idea to celebrate her birthday: invite friends over, provide rice, nori and other bips and bops of small-cut food to be used as filler, and let everyone roll their own sushi. Considering only one person in attendance was Japanese and had a little experience in the area of rolling, I think we all did very well. Farcical it might have been, but tasty it definitely was. And in place of birthday cake (which I'm never a big fan of), lemon bars.

7 Hills
Like ancient Rome, it is said that Kampala was originally built on 7 hills. The Kampala Hash House Harriers annually organise an approximately-20km run that summits each of these hills along the way: Kibuli, Nakasero, Old Kampala, Namirembe, Rubaga, Lubiri, and Nsambya. This was my forth year to participate. The route is a fantastic challenge, and it is one of the running events I look forward to most each year. I made my best time yet this year, very happy.

Selena Gomez
I must admit that I love her just a little bit. Why?
  • Maybe it's the fact that she love Britney Spears so much.
  • It may also have to with the quirky fun of Wizards of Waverly Place.
  • But I think it has more to do with the YouTube video of her doing Nicki Minaj.

There is a teeny bit of fascination that, if incubated, may turn into a new celebrity crush. And now that she's 18, that should not sound so creepy.

Garden Art
Another fabulous afternoon was spent in Bel's lovely garden with fantastic artwork and the amazing artists who created it. Once again, I'm appreciating the works of Anwar Nakibinge and Collin Sekajugo on my blog.

Accompanying all of this was great food and other incredible people. Few better ways exist to lounge away a Sunday afternoon.

Just one more random note...

On the episode of Project Runway I just watched tonight, Michael Kors criticised a designer (What's new?) by saying, "No woman in this world would want to intentionally make her butt look bigger." I think Mr. Kors, who is a brilliant designer, needs to broaden his world view.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Around the World in an Hour and Fifteen Minutes

Around the World in an Hour and Fifteen Minutes

This morning, amid the drizzle of rain and coolish weather, was the francophonie run/walk organised by Alliance Francaise, as part of their celebration of International Francophone Day.

The 10km run with a friend was on the 'to do' list for today. At 6:55am, I received the following SMS on my phone: "The rain will prob go off by 8 but might not be so much fun, still very very grey here. you plans?"

My reply two minutes later: "Rain or shine! See you there!"

Her response: "You slave driver."

Despite my apprehensive running partner's prediction, it was 'so much fun'. The cool weather was such a welcomed change to the scorching heat of recent runs, and the slight drizzle was actually quite refreshing.

I really like the way the run was organised. Alliance had a gimmick; they gave each of the runners passport cards which we had stamped along the route, as they set it to pass by the embassies of different Francophone countries with representation in Uganda. First stop was the French Embassy, then the Democratic Republic of Congo, next were the Belgians, followed by the Rwandans, and we finished off with Burundi.

I took it easy on the run, not aiming for any time, just enjoying the morning and cheering on my friend because tomorrow is the big one: The 7 Hills Run. My favourite run of the year in Kampala, and it's a real ball breaker.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Red Nose Day

Red Nose Day
Do Something Funny for Money

According to the event's official website, "It's a day like no other when the whole country (The UK) gets together to do something funny for money and change countless lives in the process." Working at a English Curriculum School with an English Head of School with several other British teachers who are familiar with this special day that takes place every two years, we had to make it happen here in Kampala, Uganda. I was very unfamiliar with Red Nose Day. I'd heard of Comic Relief in the past, but I did not know it was such a big, organised event. Apparently in the UK, it is huge.

I love the idea of uniting a whole country in a effort to make each other laugh in order to raise money for charity. It's just a lot of people helping each other out to help other people out.

Being that my school is not in the UK, we did not do anything officially affiliated with anything there. Besides, if we were going to do anything in Uganda to raise funds for charity, we wanted all the money to stay in Uganda. We selected an organisation in Uganda that our art teacher has supported for a number of years, L'Arche Community, which is a community for people with disabilities. Assisting to organise Red Nose Day at school allowed me to become more familiar with L'Arche and get to know it for more than the really great candles they make and sell to raise funds. There is a fantastic documentary about L'Arche called Kampala's Ark on YouTube. It's over 16 minutes (an eternity to load in Uganda), but it's very worth a viewing.

Superficial, I can be. It comes very easily to me. I admit that I'm not as active in any community as I used to be. Yes, I'm on the expressway to becoming a bitter, pessimistic, cynical old man. I used spend a lot of time learning about issues challenging society, and I volunteered enormous amounts of time to many different causes. Oh, I still help organise occasional events to support one cause or another; I freely lend my expertise when invited, but it stops there. Sometimes I feel quite selfish. I hate apathy, and I am becoming a bit concerned that, if I'm not careful, I could turn into the type of person I loathe.

The energy of today was like magic. The kids took advantage of not having to wear their uniforms to school today, and they dressed in hilarious manners: wigs, face paints, oversized and inside-out clothes abounded, as did underpants being worn over pants--even on top of heads. No, we did not have the official Red Noses, and no, knock-off red round noses were not found in KLA, so we opted to paint red noses on all the children, teachers and other school staff.

Even if my red nose looked more like a "bloody nose" or "like someone attempted to bite [my] nose off and failed", even if "... the kids towards the end of the day, after sweating. A lot of the paint had rubbed off by that point and the colours mixed; red and black, it looked like they'd all had bloody noses, and the blood hadn't been washed off and had dried on their faces," days like today inspire in me an ambition to learn more about my present community and find ways to make a difference.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Needed Fuel

Needed Fuel

I know I'm not the best eater. I'm usually one who eats what he feels like eating. I sometimes also experiment with the foods I eat: I was vegetarian for several years; I sometimes cut wheat out of my diet; I've experimented with eating right for my blood type. My latest experiment is making a food log. A couple of days ago I registered with to map some of my running routes with the intention of calculating distances of routes. I also wanted to share my runs with other runners in the area and to get route ideas myself. Well, the site is also able to help you keep a food log, and it does the calorie counting for you, making adjustments according to your physical activity.

Like I mentioned, I've only been doing this for a few days now, three to be exact, but one thing that has become very obvious is that I do not eat enough food. Two of the three days, I only consumed half of my recommended caloric allowance. I guess that's not a good thing. But what to do? I eat when I feel like it. I think I eat a pretty good variety of foods; it could always be better. I know.

I took advantage of the fact that I was more than 2000 calories under the daily recommendation at 8:00pm tonight and went out with friends for pizza. I would normally leave a slice or two for later. But I inhaled my entire pie shortly after it arrived at the table. I still have about a deficit of 1000 calories for today.

Apparently, it's not just Kampala facing a fuel shortage these days.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011



Chicken noodle soup, Campbell's, reconstituted, from the can; and red wine, Namaqua, Merlot, from a screw-cap bottle.

Will & Grace season 6 played from a dvd and memories of American Samoa with Nicole come to mind. Yes, I even fell asleep on the sofa before the third episode was completed.

Everything we do has a touch of class.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011



I began my day exhausted.

And it was full on.

Lesson taught.

Editing done.

Phone call made.

Assembly attended.

Photos taken.

Research completed.

Power cord collected.

PowerPoint created.

Session facilitated.

Planning discussed.

Bank queue waited.

Bills paid.

Traffic jam stuck.

7 Hills Run signed-up.

Lake Vic Triathlon registered.

Gym skipped.

Running routes recorded.

Leftovers eaten.

Will & Grace watched.

Blog written.

Early night almost accomplished.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Lilian and the Sundowners

Lilian and the Sundowners

To my friends it is not a secret that I'm a huge fan of Lilian Mbabazi; I've blogged at least three times in the past (1, 2, 3) of my love for the group (Blu 3) that gave her her start and earned her an audience. Now the once Coca-Cola Popstars champion is treading out on her own with a fresh new style and a new band called the Sundowners.

I had an opportunity to see the phenomenal Lilian and the Sundowners last Saturday night at Emin Pasha Hotel in Kampala. When I arrived at the hotel around 7:00pm, a mutual friend, Mimi, whisked me over to see my 'favourite superstar'. I'd not seen Lilian in months, and she looked amazing--always with a dazzling smile. Yes, I arrived at 7:00pm, the advertised starting time for the show. I've lived in Uganda long enough to know that shows never begin at the advertised time, but I was worried that I would not get a good seat if I showed up any later, plus, I've was betting on the off chance that the show would begin on time, and I did not want to miss moment of it. Lilian did not take the stage until almost 9:00pm, but I did get a fantastic seat on a lawn sofa.

I'm not going to gush and gush about Lilian's show and come off as a 17-year-old starstruck fan; I'll let some highlights of the show speak for themselves.

Sadly, I think I'm a jinx for Lilian. Unfortunately, every time I go to one of her shows, there is a problem with the sound in the beginning--even after exhaustive sound checks. This was the third time. Sorry Lilian. It's not intentional.

Oh, and I must once again express my appreciation to my fellow cook clubbers for allowing me to postpone our dinner (yet, again) on Saturday night so I would not miss Lilian's show. You guys are also superstars!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Controversial, Is It?

Controversial, Is It?

(It is recommended that this blog post be read with the accompaniment of a version of Prince's Controversy playing in the background. If you don't have it in you music library, shame on you, and I've provided below a remix I found on YouTube. Enhance your experience.)

The theme of the evening was controversy. I cleaned myself up and got ready to be inspired to public disagreement. I'm not sure why I missed Afriart Gallery's Controversial Art exhibition last year, so I made certain that I showed up at this one. I really enjoy exhibition openings at Afriart. Not only do you sometimes get to see amazing pieces of artistic expression, but you also usually get a chance to meet and talk with the artists--who I find to be pretty fascinating people. I'll be a little bit cheeky and also admit that sometimes it's really fun to go when you know there will be a less-than-brilliant exhibition and have a good laugh (both inside and sometimes outside) at the pieces of work that do not elicit your artistic appreciation. You know, like the movie, Flashdance--so bad that it's great!

What makes controversy? I've had this discussion with several people without reaching a definite conclusion. I guess, to an extent, one can plan controversy and work towards a controversial outcome, but I believe that it's more often an uncontrived response from the public. I don't think an artist's work can be deemed controversial until there has been some kind of public contention regarding it. Controversial topics may be addressed through art, but until it makes the audience uncomfortable enough to debate it's merit (Censor it? Ban it? Burn it? Praise it? Embrace it? Promote it?), can the modifier controversial be attached to the object?

The exhibition was interesting. There was a good mix of art (paintings, sculptures, photography, conceptual) there from a mix of some of my favourite artists, plus a hodgepodge of artists whose work I'm not yet familiar with and artists whose work I'm not a big fan of.

If seen by the right people, this painting of Jesus on a cross wearing a camouflage loin cloth with a gun strapped across his chest, could spark some controversy. Or maybe not, because similar depictions have been done before.

Nothing has drawn more international attention to Uganda over the past several months than the attitude, treatment and proposed treatment of homosexuals here. This piece is call Lynching of the Gays, and I'm glad to see the art world making a statement about the issue that is affecting Uganda's society. However, what makes this piece controversial? Controversy would have been stirred if the artist opted to paint two men in some kind of loving pose (kissing, in bed, etc...) with no judgement.

Stella Atal is an artist I have a great deal of respect for, and it was so great to see her at the gallery last night. She's amazingly talented, not only producing lovely paintings, but also designing fabulous clothing, and apparently she also writes poetry. Maybe the misspelled words were intentionally left in the above poem that accompanied her photographs for artistic effect. My concern is that the misspelled words could distract the reader from the power of her message.

This is just a portion of a larger painting, but I wanted to highlight the words on the condom traffic lights: quite amusing.

I'm not sure how long this exhibit will run, but if you find yourself in the Kamwokya area, pop in to Afriart Gallery and see it for yourself. I'd be curious to hear your opinion.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Tonight Was the Night

Tonight Was the Night

Tonight was the night I was meant to be in bed early. Last night was the first night I was able to go to sleep before 2:00am since I returned to UG one week ago today; I fell asleep at 1:00am. I call that progress. Besides my lazy weekend, I've surprisingly been able to be up and at 'em on time, even able be out the door (with my computer cord in my bag, no water left boiling, iPod on person, gas switched off) early enough to leave the vehicle parked at home and walk to work (no mean feat). I was even out the door before 7:30 on Tuesday's public holiday to go for a 13km run... after returning home closer to 3:00am the night before--blame that one a Thai food, great peeps and even better conversation in Mutungo. Oh, and way too much H2O, my beverage of choice for the evening.

There is still hope that I'll make it to bed comparatively early tonight and even break my 1:00am record. Not sleeping makes one a little crazy. (Couple that with inadequate nourishment, and you get bat-shit crazy. Thank goodness my appetite is finally returning.) The main obstacle between my bed and I that I must successfully hurdle is my internet addiction. No, it's not just facebook, it's the World Wide Web in general--anything that strikes my fancy. And everyday there is more to tickle my fancy. Tonight I've been discovering new music (to me) from Tinie Tempah and Lykke Li thanks to an introduction by Rollingstone.

Tonight is still the night.

Good night!


PS: I just found out Tinie Tempah has a song with Kelly Rowland. He just got even better.

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Anoph's Anoph

Anoph's Anoph

As if the intense night-time heat that does not permit one to wear much, if anything, while sleeping (night-time fantasies start here!), much less cover oneself with a sheet or blanket wasn't bad enough, the mosquito population has boomed making sleeping (and any other night-time activity) much less enjoyable.

In the going-on-five years I've lived in my second-story flat, mosquitos have never really posed a problem. I'd have an occasional visit from the Culicidae family, but these bastards have totally crashed at my home and do not want to leave. As I type, I'm amazed at the number of little flies zooming around my living room.

If I really wanted to get over overly dramatic, I could start getting all paranoid and crap about being infected by malaria parasites. Then my thoughts could race on about chronicling my first experience with malaria and publishing a memoir. I think I'd call it My Turn for Malaria.

Where's Miss Peggy driving along, spraying in her mosquito control pick-up truck when you need her?

Well, my lemon grass tea is finished. I'm off.

Monday, March 07, 2011

Havin' Fun

Havin' Fun

Why do angry argentinos get to have all the fun?

Where the hell was Cyndi Lauper when my flights were delayed last week, and I was pretty pissed off? She damn sure wasn't providing entertainment over the PA system of the Tallahassee Regional Airport (TLH) to alleviate my frustration.

As tomorrow is International Women's Day, I'd like to dedicate Cyndi's impromptu and LOL-able performance, along with the episode of She-Ra that I downloaded from iTunes last week, to all of my she-friends in the world.

You are all princesses (ok, some are queens) of power wantin' to have fun!

Sunday, March 06, 2011

April Tuna for President

April Tuna for President

Yesterday's series-a-thon evolved into a more exclusive Popular-a-thon today. It has been election season in Uganda. Unfortunately, I've not been able to witness any of the elections for myself since the major activities took place while I was away in the US. It was student council election day on Popular today.

In an effort to teach our young students about democracy and community service, each term at the international school where I work, we hold student council elections. The student council is very active and serves as an advisory and organizing body for the school; they are the students' voice. We get some pretty amazing ideas from the children, like the design of our school's secret garden. Our student council is made up of two representatives from each class who serve for one term. There are no officers like president. However, if they are really clever, they may one day aspire to the greatness of one candidate for student council president at Jacqueline Kennedy High School, one April Tuna.

April Tuna is one of the greatest characters ever created by Ryan Murphy. She's Sue Sylvester great, and Adria Dawn is Jane Lynch amazing with her portrayal of popular-girl-aspirant Tuna.

Today was even lazier than yesterday. The power was off for most of the day--thank goodness for friends with generators one can use while house-sitting in order to charge up his dead laptop battery so that a Popular-a-thon can continue. Dinner included great conversation with an amazing person; little could have made the evening better.

Saturday, March 05, 2011



It's been a pretty lazy day. It started off early enough and at a good pace. I went to a friend's for a quick catch-up session over a good cup o' joe and picked up some new kicks. From there I was off to Tulifanya Gallery for the current exhibition by Collin Sekajugo. His work has a unique style; I personally like the patchwork of old jerry cans. Being the brand whore that I am, my favourite pieces of his work included the Mukwano logo on the jerry cans and Jesa milk sacks.

I cut out of there before the temptation of purchasing became too great. I exited the gallery to find two police officers beside my vehicle, claiming it was illegally parked. Truthfully, it was, but honestly, I had no idea because this is Kampala, and a reality that comes along with that is not-so-well-placed signs to indicate anything traffic related. One gift I take pride in is the talent I have of keeping my words in my mouth... especially in a confrontational situation. (Bwahahahahahaha!!!) Whatever. The woman officer asked me, "But who is going to pay the fine?" The other officer and I agreed that there would be no fine, but next time I'd be sure to park correctly.

From there it was home for a lazy series-a-thon, during which I basically left my bed for only two reasons: sustenance and... I'm sure you're bright enough to infer the other one without explicitness. Will & Grace has been a tried and true companion on days like this. I finished up season 6. Then I started season 2 of Poplular (Ryan Murphy's cancelled-to-soon gem before Glee).

A glitch in telecommunication services led to a blockage of SMS messages for a period today. I was an ass to a friend who was not responding to my messages or answering my calls. At 18:14 and 18:15, I received a flood of SMS responses. I don't know for how long I can blame jet lag for my erratic behaviour, but I'm going to milk that excuse for as long as I can. I'm still working on that patience thing. Sorry about that.

Tonight almost ended with Lynne and I getting plowed over in the parking lot outside of Il Patio. The ridiculous driver, after parking his car and while trying to light a cigarette, experienced the one gift I take pride in, the talent I have of keeping my words in my mouth... especially in a confrontational situation.

Now, it's back to Popular.

Friday, March 04, 2011


I cannot believe I'm going there, but I so am. I'll blame it on the jet lag... It's like being intoxicated.

This is a building as seen and photographed in the downtown area of Port St. Joe, Florida, February 2011. Notice the signs.

No matter how sleepy the town, I cannot see a sign advertising watersports and not think of people getting urinated on. It's just where my mind goes.

The evolution of words and with what we begin to associate the letters and sound they represent is fascinating.

Thursday, March 03, 2011



I got in tonight on time, according to my amended schedule. Wow! It's warm. Not that it was so cold in Florida, but it's quite warm here. I'm going to feel very cozy in my bed tonight. I'm wondering how the jet lag will affect my sleep. My ambition is to make it in to school tomorrow morning. We'll see how that goes...

I opened my suitcase to find everything sprinkled with grits.

Shit! I thought, and pulled out the container of the cereal I'd pack. I cannot figure out how those granules got out and all over everything. Not only were they kept in the original packaging, but I also put them in a Hefty freezer bag with a zipper lock that was still sealed. I've inspected the bag for holes (if you've ever read The Secret Life of Bees or had kneeling on grits used as punishment in your youth, you can imagine how abrasive grits can be and how they might have worked a hole in a plastic bag), but I can't detect any. I've given the bag a good shake, and no granules of grits rained out. But they sure are everywhere in my suitcase. Maybe it was the gremlins in the baggage hull of the plane.

I'm limiting my unpacking for tonight, just unpacking some cheese and making sure no bath products exploded because of the pressure changes.

Happiness tonight comes from being home in Uganda.

Good night.


Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Crazy Chance

Crazy Chance

Here I am, back at TLH. Trying to get the hell out of Florida, take deux. I booked an earlier flight this time anticipating a delay and trying to ensure that I'd still make it to Atlanta on time for my connecting KLM flight.

Well the earlier flight today has also been delayed. It is unclear what is happening. All the information coming out at the airport is that the flight is "on time", but SMS messages are stating a delay of a certain amount of time, and the Delta website is indicating a slight delay. Rumor floating around the airport is that there is a possible cancellation.

Why? Why? Why? It's beautiful weather. If it is because of technical problems--two days in a row--I find that wholly unacceptable. It's not like Delta just began flying yesterday, and airplane maintenance is new to them.

For those of you who think KQ is bad with delayed/cancelled flights, I've got one word for you:


Watch this space.

Update (Thursday, 8.35am). I finally made it Amsterdam. The half-way point. Still an 8-hour (plus)-flight ahead. Crazy. The delayed flight from Tallahassee ended up only being, like, 5 minutes delayed. I arrive in Atlanta earlier than scheduled. That made me happy, but also a little concerned. The airport finally updated the flight status, and had us leaving at 15.09. That made three different flight status notices. Did anyone know where the hell that airplane was? I am very happy to be on my way home, and I'm looking forward to a night in my own bed. Any joiners? I could use a great neck massage.

Tuesday, March 01, 2011



This morning was rush, rush, rush to get out of the door. This morning included me waking my 84-year-old grandmother up to say goodbye to here. It also included me forgetting my hooded sweatshirt at Melissa's house and having to go back to get it so I did not freeze on the airplane. Also included was me finding my mother at the nursing home breakfast table to say what might just be my final goodbye. Oh, and don't let me forget that this morning also included me getting to the fist Tallahasse exit on the interstate and realising that I'd left my passport at Melissa's house, so we had to drive the 50+-mile journey back to her house to get it. Back in Tallahassee, this morning included me doing a mad dash through Wal-Mart to make some last-minute purchases. Surprisingly, it included a painless check-in at the airport and finding out that I was 15 pounds underweight.

Anticlimax: This morning included me looking at the departures screen in the terminal and discovering that my flight had been delayed. Delayed in such a way that I would not make my connecting flight to Amsterdam. Delayed in such a way that even if I caught the later flight to Amsterdam I would still miss my flight to Entebbe after.

It's back to Liberty county for me.

For one more night...

I hope.