Aug 26 2013

Kampala – ticking it all off

Friday morning dawned, and we were off to Toyota Kampala for Brodie’s service.  I was duly dumped in the Customer Service Lounge with a TV, my laptop and internet dongle.  Viking Explorer disappeared into the service bay to keep an eye on the service.  While sticking his nose in, he discovered that two of the four brackets holding the second fuel tank in place had sheared.  While an ideal solution would be to replace the brackets, we settled for the next best solution of welding the pieces back together again.  The rest of the service went smoothly, without too many other nasty surprises.  After 4 hours – coz these things never take as quick as you hope – we were heading back to the campsite.

I had been feeling slightly under the weather for a few days: loss of appetite, unhappy tummy, and generally fatigued.  So Viking Explorer returned me to the campsite so that I could spend the rest of the afternoon sleeping while he relaxed with a good book.

By this stage, Tom & Jemina had arrived in Kampala in search of – yes, you guessed it – a back wheel for their bicycle.  The one they bought in Bukoba (Tanzania) had lasted all of 2km before buckling and they caught a bus to Kampala to restart the search.

That night, Hein spoiled all of us with a most divine spinach curry.  With a sprinkle and a shake of spices, he had us all sweating with watering eyes as we devoured his delicious fare.  We all chatted about our travels – always interesting!  Hein is also a wealth of knowledge of Kampala and Uganda, having lived in Kampala for 3 years.  He generously shared any information we wanted.

Faced with a weekend in Kampala, we initially planned to head out to Jinja to visit the source of the Nile, but my preference was to recover properly so that we could enjoy out travels in Uganda.  And sleep is what I did.  Viking Explorer took Jemina to Shoprite, and returned with far more than was on the original shopping list!  Tom was making progress with sourcing a new wheel, and by Sunday evening the new wheel was in place!  By Sunday night, I decided that medical intervention was required on Monday, in addition to the other chores for the day: visa collection, gas bottle purchase, forex, Shoprite (last time).

On Monday, Tom & Jemina managed to book chimpanzee tracking for the same day as us.  We look forward to enjoying the activity together.  We headed out to take care of our chores, which we managed to complete all in one place at Lugogo Mall.  My visit to the pharmacy resulted in a treatment for giardiasis – so we’ll see if that returns me to fighting fit.  Shoprite, gas purchase and forex followed in quick succession.  Off to the Rwandan High Commission – and a freshly stamped visa in Viking Explorer’s passport!  A very successful day!

Our last night in Kampala we were treated yet again to Hein’s fabulous cooking.  He has been such a great companion, such a kind and helpful fellow traveller, and a wonderful new friend.  We wish him every success in his venture and hope to see him again.

But for us, we are finally done in Kampala, and after our sixth and final night, we’ll be let loose …

… Uganda here we come!

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