I was so nervous on the way here that I cried in the airplane bathroom (both flights). Each morning I wake up it takes me a minute to remember where I am. Now it’s the end of Day 6. Every day is totally packed with activity, which is a lot, considering I spend most of my time at home watching Netflix (and if you’re wondering, “Sorry, Netflix is not available in Uganda yet”).
Today was our “adult education day” at Wairaka Village where I “taught” the yoga class outside. The women laughed the whole time and so did I. The kids did the yoga poses behind us. They were loving it. Sweat and sunscreen and bug spray and mascara (why I was wearing mascara at all remains a mystery) dripped into my eyes and red dirt covered everyone’s palms. It was great. After teaching 3 rounds, I was exhausted (because: Netflix habit) and sat back to watch the rest of the day. My dad played with a few little kids, showing them how magnets work and how to make a duck sound with a blade of grass and sneaking a toy car into one of their pockets. Marie, who we’ve nicknamed “The Baby Whisperer,” held a sleeping baby. She is always holding a sleeping baby.
The kids we’re with have almost literally nothing. One shirt, full of holes. Shoes, sometimes. A bag of rice, at one of their two mealtimes. And they are so happy with just a hug, some cuddling, a high five, a game of Patty Cake, a wave from the bus, or a new dance move. None of them have their faces in an iAnything. The boys hold hands and they all take care of each other. It’s really something.
Sometimes I feel overwhelmed with love here, so grateful for the chance to be on this trip with this group of uniquely wonderful people. Other times I feel the jet lag and I look forward to being back in the comfort of my own space. I am so excited to sponsor one of these kids (then more, when I can). If I cry on the way back to LA it’ll be because I already miss my sweet girls at the Busoga School or because I’m thinking about the little boy who laughed so hard at the monkey puppet that tears rolled down his face. Or because I’m trying to sleep and my dad is snoring in the seat next to me and the kid behind me is kicking my seat with his eyes glued to an iPad 😉