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  • Christa Preston

The Move to Uganda: live, laugh, love, and learn, everyday.


Hello everyone! I hope all is well back home, even with the piles of snow that I am hearing about! Currently sitting here in a tee-shirt and bare feet, sun shining on the shores of Lake Victoria.

Okay so it's perfect now, but there are daily rain storms. In fact, the weather here reminds me a lot of New England in the summer, when in just moments, some dark clouds roll over and you run for cover. Luckily, my good friend Anne has advised me to carry a rain jacket with me at all times, and believe me it has come in handy! Anne has been a crucial part to my move here, she is an incredible friend, extremely intelligent, as she has the experience of living in Uganda, and is inspiring me everyday. Here is the amazing Anne, with all her energy and smiles, while we are working at our dining room table table:


This bit has been an adventure, settling in, starting to set up meetings, doing some research, and developing trainings.As expected, the “pick up and move across the world” has lead to many cultural experiences. Cultural experiences that were frustrating at the time, but provide for much humor and smiles after.

For example, as I sit here at a cafe, a lizard runs by my feet. Or as I am trying to eat my breakfast, our cat, named, "Mama Mouse" also eats off of my plate. For all those who know me, and my experiences with cats, this is a big leap for me. Maybe it's her cuteness, maybe it's that she thinks she is human, maybe it's that she plays like a dog would, or maybe it's that she is keeping our best interest in mind by protecting us from small rodents, lizards and bugs, regardless- I have to say, I have grown to love her. Here is our Mama Mouse in her typical lounging state:


The most interesting, hilarious, and wild experience in my first week here was in buying a Ugandan cell phone... Let me tell you, the process was painless, since I already had a SIM card, I just need a phone, and the woman helping me out was FANTASTIC. Easy enough. As I arrived home later that evening and went to charge my phone, the confusion and frustration grew. In the box was a charger that definitely did not look like it would fit in the outlet. Here in Uganda we have a three prong outlet system, and the prongs are square shaped. This charger had two round long prongs. (see pictures below)

Ugandan outlet: What my charger looks like:



(Images from: http://www.power-plugs-sockets.com/ and http://i.stack.imgur.com/d5cum.jpg)

SO, needless to say, I was very annoyed at how they could sell me a phone in Uganda, that I clearly was going to use in Uganda, with a European charger, maybe I should just go to Europe everyday to charge the phone.

The next day I went back to talk to the woman about it. After much debate with the people at the store, they convinced me that this charger did fit into the wall. So I said, okay, can you show me how then, because maybe I am mistaken. So they brought me around back to the outlet. I must have been wearing my confused expression very clearly as they used a pen cap to push into the top hole as they put the charger into the bottom two, because they said, “Ohhh Madame, did you not stick something in the third hole of the outlet?” After my whole life being told not to poke an outlet with objects because it is unsafe, thank you Mom and Dad, here I was being looked at like I was a complete idiot. They continued, “Ohhhh that must be why it didn’t work. You need to take something sharp, like a pen cap, and poke the top hole and then the charger will go in at ease.” Sure enough, as they held a pen cap in one part of the outlet, the round two-pronged charger fit into the square three-holed outlet. #TIA

These types of experiences happen daily, and are what keep things exciting, new, and amazing. The best part about living in another country is learning new things, new ways of living, and new beauties and humors of life. Everyday is a new, beautiful, amazing, crazy experience, and I love it!!!

Living, laughing, loving and learning everyday.

Mumbejja Kate


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