So, I almost forgot to share about the fun housemate weekend we had at Sesse Island. After traveling 4 hours by bus and one hour by car, we reached Entebbe to start searching for the ferry dock. As we would stop along the way the locals would say, "Oh you better hurry. They will leave you." Truly, this is the only place in Uganda that I have found does not follow African time. We reached the dock in time to literally run onto the boat. A good start to our fun adventures.
I don't know how it happened (other than God saving us some seats) but we made our way through the ferry crowd to find a bench completely empty and perfect to accommodate the 3 of us and our stuff. We were off for the third leg of our travel adventures: 3 hours on the ferry in the middle of Lake Victoria.
When we arrived on the island we were welcomed and I found the sign with my name (kind of) on it.
(This photo is for my TT friends... check out my name. Such fond memories around the table early in the morning with Andrew commenting in a funny tone every time the tribe was mentioned.)
We were able to enjoy the beautiful sunset and a short walk down the beach after we arrived. (Emily, Jennifer, Me)
The next morning we went on a "nature hike" around the island. Although not exactly what I was expecting, it turned out to be a wonderful time. We walked through the local fishing village and saw many men preparing their boats and their hooks to go out for the evening catch. There are actually quite a few islands that compose Sesse Islands. I learned that it is rare to find development on any of the islands beyond about 2 km from the water. Most island are composed of fishing villages and power is not available there. The people on the island are a cash based people and depend highly on food sources from the outside that is brought in on the ferries.
As usually, our white skin drew the attention of many village children. The guide was wonderful with the kids and drew a game in the sand to keep them occupied so we could make our getaway without a parade of small people following us.
I did learn that the culture on the islands do not highly value education. It is rare to find a school on the islands, so most children grow up to take over the family fishing business.
Our nature hike did actually lead us through a rainforest. This was the most amusing part of the journey, seeing as we were with 6 Ugandans. Most had never been in the forest and I have concluded that most Ugandans are extremely afraid of caterpillars. Seeing as we were in the rainforest, there were tons of little black caterpillars crawling all over the place. Squeals, jumping, shouts, crazy arms running through their hair in fear that one fell on them, and lots of, "Please!! Let's just get out of here quickly. No! Don't stop again. Let's just go!" It made the journey quite amusing.
At the end of the rainforest walk, we ended up at the top of the island's peak and were able to view the other nearby islands. It was beautiful.
After the walk, we spent the day relaxing in the sun, swimming, and playing cards. That night, there was a huge bar-b-que and bonfire. I can't tell you how delicious that dinner was (grilling is very rare in Mbale and I live with a vegetarian). Mmm. It was good. After dinner, we had a dance party around the fire with the new friends we had made at our hotel.
Early Sunday morning we loaded onto the ferry again (this time we didn't have to run) and headed back on our long journey to Mbale. Sesse Island was very peaceful and a great time with Emily and Jennifer. I only wish we could have stayed longer.