Big Brother’s African Brother #16: Lake Bunyonyi, Uganda

Lake Bunyonyi, Uganda

Day 14: 11 August 2002 9:50 pm

It’s nomination day and the group have a late breakfast.

Up at 8:00am so we could get our washing done and dried by the evening. My
clothes already have the appearance of a bag lady and washing never gets rid
of the red soil stains.

Kabale boda-bodas

Kabale boda-bodas

We managed to catch the truck into Kabale, Uganda’s highest town at 2000m
and popped into the bakery. Kabale is literally just one main high street.
As it was Sunday, everyone was dressed in their best clothes for church (two
little boys were adorned in bow ties and waistcoats).

Tom decided to head back to the supermarket to buy some munchies and
told me to wait at the bakery. But after standing like a lemon outside, I
thought I would walk up the main street to meet him. As a lone white
female, everyone stares at you and it feels disconcerting. I got to the
supermarket and Tom was not there so I headed back to the bakery. No
sign of him. I then saw Amy and Helen and decided to stay with them.

Amy had come into town to phone home, which is nothing new. She is
permanently connected to her mobile phone, constantly texting when
travelling on the truck and receiving phone calls at every campsite. Her
phone bill in Nairobi came to �200. Most people, including us, are
desperate to leave the technology of the western world behind. We do not
need to contact anyone unless it is an emergency. Mobile phones are the
curse of the century. You can’t escape technology though, even in this
remote campsite. The bar was screening the UK football Charity Shield and
Amy can chat to her family back home. John Simpson, BBC journalist, was
right when he said there are few places left in the world that are truly
remote enough not to be affected by globalisation.

We strolled up and down the main street, but could find no sign of Tom.
The truck picked us up and did a slow trawl of the main street and still no
Tom. He had vanished into thin air and I started to panic. Our tour
leader asked did I want to return with them and if we didn’t find him on the
way back, return to Kabale in an hour’s time. I agreed, and on the turn-off
to the Lake, found Tom happily chatting to a local geography teacher
about Osama Bin Laden, the differences between American English and the
Queen’s English and fishing quotas in the EU – bizarre! I was relieved to
see him.

Yet again we missed out on breakfast and only got lunch and dinner. We paid
for three meals a day – Tom is not a happy bunny.

Tom had cook duty so we didn’t get to go on our walk until 2:00pm. We
walked on the path round the lake and it was blissfully peaceful, passing
children herding goats, eagles circling above and listening to the gospel
choir in the church below. This is more like it. Lack of freedom is a
definite feature of this group trip, so we savoured every moment of the

Pig roast was for dinner (the pig had been turning on the spit since
10:00am). We were given the choice of staying at Lake Bunyonyi for another
night or travelling to Kisoro and doing a $30 volcano walk. Everyone voted
to stay here another night.

I asked Tom for his nominations and he also nominated Amy and Roberta.
Roberta as she never lifts a finger, does absolutely no work in any of her
group chores, and constantly thinks about her stomach. Amy as she is
quite surly and can never put her mobile phone down – it’s her umbilical
cord to the outside world.

Eviction night: Tom and I have evicted Roberta from the truck. Anyone
who enjoys pony club camp and contributes no work to the chore group has to

Positives: Peaceful walk around Lake Bunyonyi with gospel music in the

Negatives: Lack of freedom and we never know how long we are staying
somewhere in advance.

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