Sunday, August 16, 2009

Geting to Uganda

Getting to Uganda was a bit of an experience. I had to fly from Dublin to Gatwick, Gatwick to Brussels and Brussels to Uganda. My Uncle gave me and my gear a lift to the airport which certainly saved me a lot of hassle, so many thanks to Frank!

In Dublin I finally managed to get a camera, so now I am the proud owner of a waterproof Pentex W60. I’ve got some decent shots already, but the internet here is pretty crapy so I won’t be able to upload any till I get home.

I had to stay overnight in Gatwick as my flight from Gatwick left very early in the morning. Trying to sleep in Gatwick is not something I’d recommend to anyone I could only find one spare bench which was right beside the main entrance. I was disturbed several times, once by a guy wanting to sell me a net for my kayak, and 3 times by a drunken guy looking for money. Eventually I got to check in and I brought my boat over to the oversized baggage. However the guy operating it spoke only two words of English, “too big” and wouldn’t let me put it on. Even when I found his (thankfully English speaking) manager he didn’t want to put it in. Eventually when he was talked around it and rather unsurprisingly it did actually fit.

When we got to Brussels we were taken of the plane and put on a bus directly over to the long-haul plane for the flight to Africa. It went via Kigali (in Rwanda) which meant that the flight took over 10 hours. I also got to see a passenger board the plane in Kigali with a large, very authentic looking spear!

When I finally got to Entebbe I was meet by Robert the driver who would bring me to the NRE campsite. Driving in Uganda is an experience. Road markings are generally ignored. The roads were crowded with pedestrians, most of whom walked right down the middle with no lighting at all. Going through Kampala while on a dual carriageway we were met by even more pedestrians and Kids playing in the middle. My driver never turned of his headlights, so we spent the entire trip been flashed at. Indicators seem like a luxury item here, so if you have them you show them of by putting them on all the time.

After 30 hours of traveling I got to the NRE campsite at 1AM, despite what I’d been told about the bar been open to all hours the place was dead so I went to one of the bunk houses as it was far to late to put up a tent.

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