MEDA Blog - Stories from the Field

A Day in the Life of a MEDA Intern - Uganda

A Day in the Life of a MEDA Intern - Uganda

7:00 am

Rise and Shine!

The breathtaking view from my backyard in Kololo, Kampala. I live on a hill top, where there is fresh air, chirping birds and a view of the city of 7 hills. The sun shines through my windows every morning, so waking up is always a pleasure.

 

Chapati

Chapati is a fried pancake made with flour, water, and oil and cooked on an iron hot plate. These were from a chapatti stand in Jinja, Uganda. They are so good that I always have at least one every day!

Rolex

A rolex is typically a chapatti with a nice hot 2-egg omelette rolled up inside, but the current photo is showing a vegan version with cabbage, tomatoes, onion and avocado. It is a staple you can find anywhere, and it’s an especially popular snack after a fun night out.

8:00 am 

On my way to work

My commute to work is with 1 of 3 boda boda (motorcycle) drivers that wait outside my complex. Here I’m riding with Lawrence, and we’re just passing by a taxi or mini-bus stage/station, a bottleneck on the road since the big white and blue mini-buses stop to pick up or drop off passengers. Most bodas (including mine) will weave in between these taxis and other cars, or forego the road all together and ride the sidewalks.

10:00 am

Client meeting

Here’s a client meeting with a savings group in Kagadi, a small rural town in Western Uganda. I’m with Emma, an enthusiastic bank branch staff who helped me as a translator. These guys are all boda boda drivers in Kagadi who bank with Ugafode. I was there to learn about how they save together with the goal of everyone owning their own motorcycle.

12:00 pm

Lunch!

I rarely eat a big lunch (usually only chapatti and fruit) so this was a special meal for me, and it was a treat from a colleague. The fatty pieces of pork are roasted on sticks over a grill and served here with tomato and onion salad, sliced avocadoes and boiled cassava. A pinch of salt and spice are on the side for you to add to your own preference. I paired my meal with Stoney, a ginger-based soda.

2 pm

Americano

I like to go out if I’m craving a good quality cup of java. Here, as with most cafes, the coffee is serviced with a cookie or two. This particular restaurant had a big sized cookie that perfectly melted in your mouth after dipping it into the coffee.

Corn or Maize

Corn grows everywhere in my neighbourhood and right behind our office building. I’m enjoying this big cob that was grilled over charcoal while sitting in a hot crowded taxi heading back to the city. The kernels tend to be chewy, not crunchy and not too sweet. It is eaten by plucking away kernel by kernel, and then row by row, rather than biting into it.

6:30 pm

A scrumptious dinner

I had this delicious meal in the Ssese Islands, a beautiful getaway from the city. Being on Lake Victoria, Africa’s biggest body of freshwater, I had to try the fish. On my plate I have a fried Nile perch and beef, with the usual sides of spaghetti, matooke (steamed plaintain), g-nut sauce (ground nut, or peanut sauce) and a small serving of avocado and tomato. The fish was so good that I had to take seconds!

8 pm

Teaching dance

I head straight to the dance theatre every day after work to learn African Contemporary, rehearse for an upcoming show, or like in this picture, teach ballet and contemporary ballet to youth.

Dance is life.

At the time of this picture, I was rehearsing for a concert for a big Ugandan artist who invited dancers to accompany his music. This group was performing hip hop and my piece was a blend of hip hop and contemporary.

10 pm

Goodnight!

 

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