Uganda 08 diary - Day 6

By this stage, Sophie was the only person to have had any health problems, being laid up in bed for a day with a bad stomach upset. The chlorine (as opposed to iodine) tablets that most people this year were using to filter their water seemed to be more palatable and the food was good and plentiful. Though after a while the relative lack of variety from one day to the next did become noticeable, making us realise how lucky we are to be able to select from such a wide variety of food in our supermarkets. It is to the great credit of the team, however, that not once did we hear anyone complain about such things as the food.

Day 6 was to prove a testing one for myself health-wise. During the night I was forced to make frequent toilet visits and also vomited. By the next morning I felt rather weak. However, we had prepared the music for the school's Sunday Mass with the local choir and I was leading a few things with my guitar. So I drank lots of water and said a few prayers.... It was touch and go. During the singing I felt rather faint and had to go out for fresh air and a toilet visit during communion, though I did just make it back in time to lead "Happy Song".

The joint music group after Mass.

However, once Mass was over I felt worse still, so it was out of the question that I join the others in going back to the orphanage for a day's activities. I had no need to worry, as the group were most definitely in safe hands, ie. Bro. Francis + Sophie.

Here are some wonderful photos of the day taken by Bros. Francis + Michel.... oh yes, I need to explain that we also had a French Brother travelling with us, the ever-jovial Bro. Michel Clouet who had spent 2 years working in Uganda nearly 40 years ago and who was delighted at being able to join our group and make his first visit back after all these years.

There's Bro. Michel's head in the bottom right.

A meal for over 100 people at the orphanage, brought in by outside caterers, was paid for from the funds our group had raised.

When they got back for supper, I was still in bed and soon after suffered a blackout, presumably through dehydration, whilst trying to get to the sink. I woke up on the floor with a chair on top of me and in the worst feverish sweat I have ever had. This was despite drinking gallons of water. None of it seemed to be getting into my body. I think because there was stuff in my stomach that my body didn't want to digest (I'd had a banana at lunchtime, my one attempt at eating) and needed to "evacuate" upwards. I picked myself off the floor and just made it to the sink. The necessary evacuation occured and I instantly felt a whole lot better. But, it was many days before I got up to something like normal energy levels, as the sickness left me with no appetite whatsoever. The slightest smell of food would set me off. The following morning I was able to join the others though and didn't miss any more of the activities.

The night of my health crisis, the rest of the Team took part in a round-the-campfire session of dances, songs and general fun and games organised by the local pupils and which by all accounts was a great success.


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