We are in Uganda!!!!!

We are here!  Things have been incredible so far.  The flights went very smoothly.  Everyone was SO very nice and helpful.  Because of our kids, we were facetracked through every line there was.  Always taken right to the front.  I felt like we were VIPs at Disneyworld or something.  The kids were great on the flights.  Karson was determined to stay awake the entire way and was almost successful.  Of course, that meant I didn't get but maybe 2hrs of sleep the whole trip.  Still recovering!

Then once in Uganda (we landed around 10:30pm) there were 3 airport workers that helped Jason unload all the luggage while I kept up with the kids.  The car seat was the only thing missing. (we were able to use the seat on the first flight, but they said there wasn't room for it on the second so they took it at the gate).  So we had to wait at the luggage claim for quite a bit while they were checking tags.  Finally, Jason and I decided to just forget about the seat because even if they found it later and had it in Entebbe, we would have to pay $100 both ways just to go pick it up and it wasn't worth it.  The blessing in disguise though was that since it took us so long to get all of our luggage and deal with the seat, the rest of our flight was already completely done with customs and security.  I guess they don't hang around in between flights because there was NO ONE at security.  The workers helping us push the carts asked if we needed to go through customs, if we had anything we were trying to sell that we needed to pay taxes on.  I said no, we don't have any of that so we can just skip that and they let us just walk right out the door.  We had some shillings so I tipped the guys that helped us and they looked at me really strangely.  I asked today about tipping in Uganda and they said it is not normal and that in some situations it can be looked at as a bribe.  Thank goodness me tipping with the luggage didn't get us into trouble.  So much to learn!

We were finally leaving the Entebbe airport around 11:00pm and had decided to drive strait through to Jinja.  We arrived with no problems at Arise Africa Guest House shortly after 2am.  THE KIDS WERE WIRED!  I think it was well past 5am before I finally got Hadlee and Pierce completely to sleep.  Rachel Ruiz and Brooke Thomas were there to meet us at the airport and have been such a huge help.  Our hopes were to let the kids sleep in their room and Jason and I get some rest, but the kids had other ideas.  Pierce ended up "sleeping" with me, and I use that term loosely because he mostly tossed and turned all night.  We did stay in bed until well past 1pm though!

The rest of today was just spent hanging out at Arise.  We went to a place called 2 Friends for dinner, which was just a short walk away.  It was a beautiful place and they had pizza so the kids ate and ate.  Pierce has been going up to every person he meets and just bear hugging their legs.  They all just pick him up and toss him in the air.  He loves it and I think they love him too.  It just cracks me up how bold he and Hadlee are.

That is all for now.  Tomorrow morning we are heading to another area to take the kids to visit the Amazima program and to meet the kids at Canaan's Children Home.  Then tomorrow afternoon we are traveling to the Mafubira area with Lufafa (who we found out goes by Emmanuel and Lufafa is his last name!) to see the future site of the new clinic and meet the people we will be helping.  I can't wait for that.
Matthew Ortega12 Comments