Into the underbelly of Entebbe International Airport, Uganda

“Excuse me, are you Mr Anderson?”

“Yes, Chris Anderson, that’s me.”

“Sir, there’s something vibrating in your bag.”

Entebbe International Airport, Uganda

“Uh… I don’t think there are any electronic items in my bag…”

“Well, once you’re through passport control, we’ll go take a look together.”

Five minutes pass. My passport is stamped. And then…

“OK, Mr Anderson, come this way.”

Escorted by the man who had checked in my luggage, plus an airport security lady, we walked down a set of stairs, made a left once we reached the tarmac, and finally a second left turn took us into the underbelly of Entebbe International Airport.

The luggage conveyor belts under the airport were still. The holes in some places and random bits of broken machinery in others testified to years of neglect in this part of the airport, normally hidden from the view of the thousands of passengers flying in and out of this otherwise shiny, modern airport every day.

Ahead and to the left, a huddle of baggage handlers in yellow reflective overalls stood and crouched in various poses, some with arms crossed, others arms akimbo, as one might expect dancers in a Broadway musical to surround the star actor at the end of an action-packed song and dance number. Except, in this case, the star actor was my backpack.

Into the centre of the circle of men I strode, attempting my best to exude friendly, nonthreatening confidence. Sure enough, something was very much vibrating in my bag: the electric razor I use to shave my head. Having not shaved my head in a month, I’d completely forgotten it was even in my bag and, sure enough, it had somehow switched itself on.

Aside from that, the flights from Uganda to Switzerland went unbelievably smoothly.

Bunia, DRC and a visit with my aunt in Kampala, Uganda

After finishing up in Dungu, we landed in Bunia on February 24th for a nice weekend off. The next week was spent doing an inventory of the emergency preparedness stock, including things like jerrycans and tent poles…

Jerrycans stacked against a wall. Bunia, DR Congo
Tent poles. Bunia, DR Congo

On March 2nd, I flew to Kampala, Uganda. First, the plane took us to Entebbe International Airport to clear customs, then a very short seven minute flight from Entebbe to Kajjansi Airfield.

Leaving Bunia:

Bunia from above

The mountains just outside Bunia:

Mountains just outside Bunia, DR Congo

A mountain-top village just outside Bunia:

Mountain village just outside Bunia, DR Congo

Landing at Entebbe International Airport, Uganda:

Landing at Entebbe International Airport, Uganda

Looking back toward Entebbe as we flew to Kajjansi:

Flying from Entebbe to Kajjansi, Uganda

One of many opulent homes seen from above when flying from Entebbe to Kajjansi:

Rich person

Kajjansi Airfield from above:

Kajjansi Airfield, Uganda

Aside from the one night spent in transit in early January, I hadn’t been to Uganda since my three week visit over Christmas at the end of 2002. This time around I only had four days, but it was a welcome chance to spend a lot of time with my Aunty Jo and some of the other wonderful Sisters of the Sacred Heart in Kampala. We had a great time catching up and chatting about a million different topics, and they fed me really, really well!

Me and my aunt:

Me and Aunty Jo, Kampala, Uganda

Aunty Jo with sisters Ursula and Lynette, beside Lake Victoria:

Aunty Jo, Ursula, and Lynette in Kampala, Uganda

Despite being a huge city, Kampala still has a fair few animals, both domestic and wild, such as these Ankole-Watusi cattle (long-horned zebu):

Ankole-Watusi cattle in Kampala, Uganda

I also spotted a chipmunk eating a peanut, just like in a cartoon:

Chipmunk eating a peanut in Kampala, Uganda

In a tree, about six feet from the ground, I spotted a tiny little tree frog:

Tree frog in Kampala, Uganda
Tree frog in Kampala, Uganda

When I returned to the house on foot after having lunch with a friend in another part of the city, I found about fifteen or twenty banded mongooses running through the area and managed to catch a pair of the slower ones as they ran away:

Banded mongooses in Kampala, Uganda

Pretty soon my time in Uganda was up, and I was off to the airport once more…