August 1, 2011

Kanyanya Hill

Filed under: Trips,Uganda — pearsey @ 7:05 pm
Tags: , ,

James and Dennis took me on a tour of their local village and we went to Kanyanya hill (pronounced can (can you do it) – yan (rhymes with the first syllable can) ya – said really quickly). It was a humbling experience getting a tour of their village. Some of the conditions some of the people live in are ordinary, the way they have quarried the land is ummm… strange and there is no infrastructure as we would know it, but yet the people still have a resilient and unquenchable spirit and are always willing to give a wave and say hello. Of course James and Dennis would have been the talk of the town having a muzungu lady with them!

We headed through the village to the top of Kanyanya Hill. When you get an overview of an area, it gives you a different perspective. Kampala really is quite picturesque from above – it looks like there’s plenty of trees, the houses and buildings look fairly good and the suburbs look fairly well laid out. It looks much different when you’re actually down in the area.

At the top of the hill there’s a house just about literally perched on top of the hill. They’ve dug out so much of the dirt around it there’s not much left on any side. Then you see the weird things like a clump of vegetation left sitting on a stack with everything else around it gone. You wipe out so much of the vegetation surrounding this solitary tree, why save this one? Why leave it sitting there looking ridiculous like that? Same with the power pole. So much land quarried for dirt for bricks or roads that I’d imagine erosion would be a pretty big problem and I can tell you for sure that dust is a HUGE problem over there. I was leaving the window open at night to let in some breeze. Unfortunately the breeze bought in the dust, it got so bad I had to choose between the breeze and breathing. I chose to breathe.

The church in the pictures below is one of the traditional denominations – I just forget which one. That church is by far the most impressive building in the village. We saw a man who was “mulalu” – or crazy. I just wanted to go pray for him and heal him, James and Dennis just kept walking – guess they are used to that. Over here we would treat those with a mental illness a lot differently, in Uganda there is no social security, center link or any government way of support for these people. If their family don’t look after them, they’re on their own, unless they happen to get lucky and find an aid organisation who will help.

One thing I wasn’t really sure of is how they actually knew where their village boundary was. I guess it’s a bit like us – most of us don’t really know where our suburbs begin and end, we just take a guess depending on which one we want to be in!

As we walked around, there were piles of smoldering rubbish burning. There’s no rubbish collection, so anything the chooks and goats don’t eat is burnt – paper, plastic you name it, it gets burnt. Creates so much pollution and ugly areas of “remains”. But what else can they do with it? To them it’s their way of life.
An “unroadworthy” car sitting around somewhere is normally not so unusual. So when I saw the taxi sitting there, I didn’t think it would be going anywhere. But then I’d seen some of the taxis getting around and they looked like they shouldn’t have gone anywhere either, so you just never know – I checked with James and Dennis. They gave me a funny look and said of course it doesn’t go. You just NEVER know around here though!

There’s always something that makes you go hmmm… The road barricade, or fence made of car diff’s was an interesting way of recycling. Had to get a photo of that. It was only in that area that I saw anything like it though, I guess one person started a trend and the rest followed.

I ran out of batteries in the camera just after we got to the top of the hill when I went the first time – that was a bit frustrating as we came home a different way. It wasn’t until the second last day (nearly 5 weeks later) in Uganda that I finally got back there. Glad I got back there though, same hill, different atmosphere, different time of day and different weather conditions. Was a good time of reflection before leaving, thinking of all that I’d seen, done and experienced.

Anyway, here’s some photos, I’ll try and put some descriptions below each one.


1 Comment »

  1. […] that I’d walked down with James and Solomon and we headed up to Kanyanya hill (read about it here). Mike had been to Kanyanya Hill years ago, on an earlier trip, but this was the first time […]

    Pingback by Saying Goodbye « Thumper… — February 17, 2012 @ 7:55 pm | Reply

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