by Lorien E. Menhennett
That essentially means “white person” in Luganda, the local language in the central region of Uganda. As we’d walk down a street, through a village, or up to someone’s house, we’d often hear little people yelping out the word, in reference to all the big white people (us) traipsing around. I don’t think it meant as an insult, though, at least not in these situations. The kids were simply curious. We certainly stuck out. And they wanted to see what all the hubbub was about.
Who were we to disappoint these little darlings? So we put on a show. We would all snap pictures of the kids with our phones, and then show the kids what they looked like on the screen — something that inevitably brought out shouts of excitement. We shook hands and traded high-fives and thumbs-up. I think Randi was their favorite because she doled out lollipops and balloons (often with our help).
Some kids were shy. But most were friendly, waving vigorously and calling out as we walked back to the van to leave. Some of my happiest moments during the day, brief but key moments that kept my spirits up, were spent with these kids. Here are pictures of those shared moments.
(Click on any photo to see an enlarged slideshow.)