Thursday, March 23, 2017

Ntinda Apartment

I thought I would post some pictures of our apartment so we will always be able to remember it.  We live in a suburb of Kampala called Ntinda.  It is not too far from the office and on a good day we can get to the office in 20 minutes.  On a bad day it's more like 45 upwards.  The road in from of our apartment is a dirt road that is very narrow and rutty.  I have to brace myself for all of the potholes and speed bumps that we must travers each morning and each night going to and from the office.  We have been out a few times trying to get some walking exercise in the evenings but it's not too easy with the traffic and the bad roads.

This apartment has been ok for us.  Our bed is comfortable and we have been enjoying the A/C in our room.  I haven't tried cooking anything yet but will this weekend.  We generally have a simple breakfast...Rick likes cereal and I'll have a yogurt and a piece of fruit after we get to the office.  For lunch we generally will snack on some carrots and nuts and then head out around four for an early dinner.  We have found some great restaurants within a reasonable distance from our home and have been enjoying eating out.  I'm getting spoiled.  Not only am I not doing much cooking but we get home fairly early and get to enjoy some down time.  That doesn't seem to happen that much in Mbale.

This is the drive coming into our apartments.
I love seeing that big tree every time we pull in.

                As we get closer we start to see a little something growing in it.

Avocados!  Here they pronounce them ah-voh-cay-dos.
There are lots of them in the tree and they look like they are ready to eat.  I am tempted to pick a couple.....cause they are so big and beautiful!

We drive right under the avocado tree and park.

Our apartment is on the third floor on the right.  
The sister (two of them) are just below us.
The elders (four of them) are on the bottom left.
The Towers are on the bottom right.
 And the rest are just empty.
How about that cool tree on the left??

A view of our balcony.
We don't spend much time out here but it has a nice view overlooking some gardens and other homes.

This is our sitting room.
For some reason the furniture makes me itch so mostly I hang out in the bedroom.

                                         Our dining table.
                  We don't use it very much but it is a pretty table.

Our kitchen is small but again I haven't ventured to spend much time here.  I just wash a few dishes and use the fridge.  That's about it.  Our washer is out the door that you can barely see on the left.  There is a little deck out there with enough room for a washer.  No dryer so we hang them on the drying racks in the second bedroom.  It works out fine except we miss having nice fluffy towels from the dryer!

I love this painting so much.  It is in the hallway.  It reminds me of Francis' home and family in the village.  There is another smaller version in the sitting room.

Last but not least.  Our bed.  we haven't let the mosquito net down yet and probably won't.  I have gotten a few bites, though.  The other morning I woke up with four bites on the back of my neck.  Four within two inches square.  Mosquitos....I don't like them but they sure like me!!

One thing I love about the bedroom is the window that faces east.  Every morning we get a beautiful view of the sunrise.  And boy are they beautiful.  Lots of color!  I like to just lounge in bed and watch the sun come up.  It's a good way to start the day:)

I don't have any pictures of our bathroom but I promise it's there.  A shower, pedestal sink and a toilet.  Not a lot of space but it works.  Tonight after our evening walk I got in the shower to clean up.  I didn't notice anything strange about the water but when I was drying myself off my white towel was covered in brown splotches.  I looked at the floor of the shower and it was a little muddy.  I turned the water back on and noticed that it was coming out.... reddish brown!  EEWWW!!  How did I NOT notice that!!  I called Rick in and asked him to get me some purified water to rinse off with.  He said, "turn the water back on and see if it will clear up."  I did and within a few minutes it did start clearing so I hopped back in and showered again.  I still don't feel all that clean but I'm just putting it out of my mind.  Man, I'm glad we don't have to drink that stuff.  I'm thankful for purified water!!!!

There is also a second bedroom and bath.   They have come in handy when we have had our Mbale friends over:)

All in all we are glad to have this nice apartment to come home to at the end of each day.  I recognize that we are truly blessed to have power and water, and a flushing toilet.  I have been in many places where they have none.

Just down the road from our apartment is a very poor neighborhood that we pass by each day on our way to the office.  The pit latrines are made of sheet metal and the small homes are made of mud and sheet metal.  There are many, many homes crunched into this neighborhood.  Each time we pass by I think about the people that live inside of these homes.  They are real people and this is real life for them.   I am curious about their lives.  What do they do for a living?  What is their family life like?  What do they know about God?  Do they know he loves them?

I have gotten the opportunity to be in homes and neighborhoods just like this in Mbale and Busia.  These people feel, and love, have challenges, and hurt, and have joy just like we do.  They are good people trying to provide for their needs and take care of their families just like we do.  The same... but so different.   Temporally we have been given so much.  We get irritated when the hot water runs out or the washer breaks down.  Many of these people have to walk a long way just to get water and then they have to carry it back to their homes.  In the dry season it is common to wait at the borehole for four hours to have your turn at the water spigot.  And a washer??....forget it.  Most of the women do their laundry in a bucket and then hang their clothes on a line or bushes for their clothes to dry.

It is easy to take for granted the many blessings of comfort that we have and enjoy because we have always had it and have had no reason to worry that we wouldn't have it.   Let's not forget to thank Heavenly Father for his bounteous blessings upon us.  We have so much and it all comes from Him!  We are truly blessed!!

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