He giveth and taketh away.. Learning to still give praise


It was the best of times it was the worst of time,

4 months ago my nephew Ronald had a boda accident at home in Rubanda, Kabale

With no broken bones, thank God, he checked into Mulago on 10th December 2014.

I spent almost every night at Mulago Hospital fearful, waking up before dawn to shower and go about my daily duties – a few noticed the lack of sleep, many had no clue.

Some of my best shots I took out of the hospital window, sharing on Instagram http://www.instagram.com/dannyt_ug.

I even wrote about the rot (pun intended), the mess and the meds on my silent blog 

I learnt patience and humility, to be grateful for small mercies for hospital food – to make friends and be nice to strangers – you never know what struggle they are going through.

People passed on to the left and right, Ronald could breathe on his own without the lobotomy tube, smile at his sisters’ jokes and move his arms but was never really conscious. He was off medication and under palliative care – fighting bed sores with all we had.

Last Thursday, Ronald checked in at Kabale Hospital. Yesterday 8th April 2015 he checked out, a 28 year old man in the evening of his life, now lost to us….

We are grateful for all that stood with us during this time. May God Bless you all.

He giveth and he taketh away, (even when it is hardest ), may His name be praised.

Gulliverish Travels


In a battered old Toyota Noah squeezed between a lithe Langi girl and a talkative little man, I lean forward so I don’t have to feel the bumps as much.

This is the return journey of my inaugural visit to Kitgum. A side trip to surprise a wonderful 40:40 volunteer, but that is a story for another.
The journey to was full of eagerness and in a half-full bus, even the heat was bearable, the bumps weren’t as obvious –

There is no signpost in sight. Beside the road peace monument and scars, debris, memoirs of the LRA war.
I don’t know where I am and the murram road and discomfort leaves me asking myself at every stop (bathroom break, checking on relatives), are we there yet?

I turn on my Google Maps as long as the battery will allow.
Between spots of GSM network I manage to get an inkling of where I could be. But the actual journey is longer than Google predicts –

Suddenly light (can’t be rebels) and then trucks of murram (thank God!). At least the road might be fixed before 2016 or before I return, whichever comes first. A signpost at last! Aswa!

This is the seat of Hon Ronald Reagan Okumu for the last 10 years! The night is dark and full of fears! 2016 is coming..
And I am but a voyeur, a tiny traveller in giant world



It Is Worth Conquering – This Country Love


Originally posted on Pru's Notebook:

I completely had no plans for Valentines day – so somehow I end up at the Bob FM Valentines day party. Yes, I knew that it was going to be about love and awesome country music, but not this kind of country love.

As I saw couples hold their hands with perfect gentleness, a thought of envy crossed my mind- I could almost tell what their silent whispers were about- the leaping hearts of knowing that they are the one- the beauty which springs from knowing that you are loved. That you have been chosen among the gorgeous many and he doesn’t care what the rest of the world says all his attention is on you.

My ever wandering mind strolled away as beautiful music filled the air, the first stopover was to my most recent love and boy that you don’t eat and you don’t sleep is not a…

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A not so Christmas story

A not so Christmas story

Haku drew his blanket around himself, placing his sack of belongings below his head. He punched at shoved it till it felt just right.

With a sigh he drew the blanket up to his chin in the makeshift shelter he had built on the grazing land. It was temporary and so he could not take much Liberty in its finishing. Except it allowed him a good view of the cattle and the night sky.

“Kenyana is rather beautiful” he thought quietly “but her father will probably require many cows, and not from a cowherd like me.”

He yawned loudly and rubbed his empty belly. This night promised to be cold, even rainy. Already he could make out only a couple of the stars, the rest dim and only visible when he stared hard.

He saw the three bright ones he had seen while he sang to her under the Jacaranda tree by the well. Her eyes seemed bright and she did smile quite often.
“She must like me – or at least she finds me amusing!”, he thought.
Next time he would have to find some new jokes, but when would the next time be.
She was always going to festivals with her folks, rarely did she come to the well, and when she did she did she always had a couple of other girls with her.
Today was different all the luck was on his side and all he could do was sing. He felt foolish now but there wasn’t much he could do.

Kenyana was a diamond, a gem! And he fell asleep with the thought in mind, images of her giggling happily in his dreams and a smile playing at the corner of his lips.

He didn’t hear the caravan of camels walk past or the bright star gliding steadily across the night sky.

But Haku was unexplainably warm and happy and would not awaken till the crack of dawn

So this is Christmas

So this is Christmas

I thought to write of Yuletide past – singing Noel, the plays, the Christmas Carols, Cantata, the tree, decorations, balloons, new clothes, that Christmas cassette, the lights, family photo in matching clothes – the longest church service , village visits, new clothes and that Christmas meal that almost always left me feeling ill!
Kulya Christmas – to eat Christmas! That’s what it was…



Now two days to and I can’t seem to feel the buzz – it is a break from work, a chance to go on holiday, every family member planning their own gateway – bills, jam, worrying about January – oh! How the years go by

Somehow we forget to put the CHRIST in Christmas
– replace with X – where X stands for food, bingeing, holiday, leave from work etc

And whilst we wait for the spirit to kick in, it escapes us the real reason for this season…

I don’t know what X stands for in your case but you could say in the comments section

Merry Christmas to you all and all the best in the new year! Feliz Navidad