Thursday, June 16, 2011

When It's Not There

When It's Not There

When I was little and we used to plead with our mother to buy something for us using the argument, "It's cheap; it's only a dollar." She would smile and simply say, "Everything's expensive you don't have money."

And with no money, all 45 of the teacher colleges in Uganda closed this week. Reading this news made me very sad. I wish it could be said that considering the abundance of high-quality teachers happily employed and doing a GREAT job providing top-knotch education to young people the country over, including the rural area, there is no cause for alarm. I wish I did not feel so cynical and could think that the situation will quickly be resolved and it is not a disaster. But the reality is fighter jets and the likes.

This really makes me sad. Many dedicated educators, parents, communities have sacrificed so much--blood, sweat and tears if you will--to improve the access and quality of education for children in Uganda. Dedicated teachers in numerous (if not most) schools have carried on in overcrowded and under-resourced classrooms day in and day our for many, many years. The teacher colleges receive less than a dollar a day per student enrolled to cover student needs, including meals. Well, not when there are 420 million shilling cars (notice the plural) that need to be bought.

Yesterday the Ugandan shilling weakened again, to what is being referred to as an all-time low. I don't know if that's an exaggeration, but I do know that despite driving my rent down (yay!), it's going to send the price of just about everything even higher (boo!). It's beginning to get crazy. I seriously do not know how some people get by each day.

In more-upbeat news from Uganda, there was a central total lunar eclipse last night.

I totally swiped this photo from a neighbour's facebook page because my camera is not capable of snapping such shots. I'm so happy that I did not miss out on this. Thanks, i, for the kind reminder at 7:30. Although it did not begin here until just after 10:00pm. It was a bit cloudy in Bugolobi, so at times I was not sure if I was seeing an eclipse or cloud cover. But when the moonlight was gone, there was no mistaking what it was.

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