Baldrick, star of the USPCA Dog Show!
From the gutter to the Kabira Club, what a true star my mutt Baldrick is.
And what a fantastic advert for the work of the USPCA, the Uganda Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. Found as a pup drowning in a ditch, Baldrick Superdog came First in the Dog with the Waggiest Tail competition at this year’s USPCA Dog Show and third overall on the day! Check out the photos here.
The Dog Show was a fundraising day for the USPCA, held at the Kabira Country Club, a very smart hotel in town and not somewhere this volunteer can normally afford to go. So, not only does this dog have his heights set high, he’s opening doors for me too!
He’s a proper mongrel or “indigenous mix” in vet-speak.
Update on dog poisoning
It turns out that the five dogs who died last month were poisoned by posho (maize) porridge that they’d been eating every day. Tests reveal the posho had a fungus in it, fatal to dogs. Posho is a staple for many Ugandans; it’s a cheap bland stodge. The infected posho gave the dogs liver damage. Apparently it doesn’t affect humans, not that I’m ever likely to get a liking for posho. Ugh].
This week my UCF colleague Patrick and I drove round Kampala to ‘reinvigorate the membership’ (visiting our corporate supporters), now we have our newsletter to hand out and bundles of Xmas cards to sell. I’m in my comfort zone now and have sold 600 Xmas cards this week. It feels great to bring some cash into the organisation. There’ll be more challenges ahead in the office in the New Year but I’m happy to near the end of the year on a positive note.
If you’d like to help me support UCF please click on the Justgiving link. It’s why I’m in Uganda after all. I’m incredibly lucky to have this experience, although it’s not always easy.
On our rounds, there was a scary moment when I entered the British High Commission on Kira Road. Like a spaceship that’s landed on a foreign planet, this building – the security in particular – seem so terribly incongruous here in Kampala.
High point of the day was bumping into a handsome Ugandan friend of mine. He’s bending over backwards to do me all kinds of favours. Swoon. What else can a girl ask for?!
Now I’m getting excited about my trip to see a great friend of mine Holly in South Africa, the Rainbow Nation. This time next week, touch down Johannesburg! Three weeks of sun, wine and the sea. Bliss!
You may ask: so what changes? But it’s the rainy season here in Uganda (the radio forecast “a cold 23 degrees in Kampala”); wine is very expensive (but I’m getting used to the Tetrapak of Spanish plonk!) and the only seafood is frozen (and way out of the price range of a VSO volunteer’s allowance)… So those are all reasons why I can’t wait to go to South Africa.
Blowing most of my savings to get to South Africa.
Delighted to say I’m hoping to earn next year’s travel expenses via Lonely Planet now I’ve been accepted as one of their Bloggers. Rock on!
But before that – tomorrow – I have to run my first 10km race.
Running, Hashing and the World Cup in Africa
The main event is the Kampala Marathon and we’re all sponsored by MTN, the main mobile phone provider, also sponsor of the 2010 World Cup to be held in South Africa. The World Cup is going to be HUGE for Africa. Ugandans are crazy about football, Premier League in particular, and people line the streets outside restaurants 10-deep when a game is on. (No question of anyone buying a drink though!)
Everyone has a favourite team and Ugandans know the players as intimately as we do in the UK. Ugandans actually talk about the football though, not the WAGs, the haircuts and the sponsorship deals …
I’m in Uganda courtesy of VSO who recruit, train and support 1500 volunteers a year in developing countries. We are teachers, doctors, nurses, physiotherapists, speech therapists, marketing and business development professionals, IT trainers and a whole lot more. Our remit is to ‘share skills’ building an organisation’s capacity to develop and be sustainable when we return home.