Thursday, January 14, 2010

Southwest Uganda Ho!

(Not a bad place to spend a few days)

I visited Western Uganda this past week to kick off my traveling. We first went to Lake Bunyonyi, which is said to be the 2nd deepest lake in Africa (after Lake Tanganyika). It was very beautiful, but a little cold. We stayed at a really cool guesthouse on an island in the middle of the lake. Once we got the island it was all about relaxing, swimming in the reputedly bilharzia-free water and canoeing in local style canoes. Relaxing went off without a hitch, swimming went well too. The canoeing on the other hand was a bit of a challenge. They have a saying on this lake about the "mzungu corkscrew" because white people don't really know how to do it properly and just spin in circles. Suffice it to say that they know what they are talking about. It took about 45 minutes, but we got it down and eventually were shushing around the lake like pros. No skinny dipping this time, as there is a rumor that "if you swim naked at night the local otters will mistake your testicles for food and bite them off." No thanks

(Nightfall over Lake Bunyonyi, southwestern Uganda)

After a few days there, Caitlin and I split off from our friends and went to Kibale National Forest for a little side trip. Coincidentally, to get from Lake Bunyonyi to Kibale one has to drive through Queen Elizabeth Game Park. Because we're poor we of course took public transportation, because it's not a popular route that meant matatus. As we were driving through the park there were animals visible here and there out the windows, we saw elephants, buffaloes and antelope-y things. The best part was Caitlin got all excited the first time we saw something, so for the next two hours the other 25 people in the taxi (14 seats, excluding driver) took it upon themselves to scout for animals to show us. Some people pay thousands of dollars for a safari, we got ours for about $5- with 25 personal tour guides. No pictures unfortunately, I couldn't bring myself to be the idiotic white guy with a camera poking out the window.

It was a great week with my roommates, and an amazing finish to my time in Uganda. Kibale was even better, so stay tuned...

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