Washing the Dishes

We arrived at the Imvepi Health Center and here, in remote Northern Uganda, all modern comforts I take for granted are many miles away. Showers, electricity to cook food, indoor toilets, running or potable drinking water, and a malaria-free environment were all living somewhere else. The workload for simple things increased dramatically. I realized the generosity of our hosts. Daily water tank trips to fill up jerry cans for showers, cooking over a charcoal fire, washing clothes by hand, and on top of everything else they have to do, generally being pleasant and welcoming hosts. I pestered the staff with silly questions about how people get married and listened about how to treat a snake bite with a 500 shilling coin. I was amazed at the lightning speed everyone came up with funny jabs at each other. We delicate westerners came with our bottles of water to drink and our bug spray in tow. Even offering to wash the dishes quickly became a point of embarrassment because I wasn’t sure how.

-Christy Josten

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