The Karoo is hot. Like fucking sun-massacred hot. The land where God hates the trees. She loves only the scrubby, fragrant bushes that refuse to die and the Orange river. The leviathan that cuts its way through the flat line of the horizon like an old boxer – no speed remains, only power.
[Taken from the Ugandan Journals]
In transit at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, I bought a copy of Six Months in Sudan by James Maskalyk. I vacillated over the decision to buy it. Mostly because of not wanting to draw shillings from the ATM just for a book. In the end, of course, I would.
Returning is only over when you are back at a place you recognise as home, waking up in a bed that remembers how you like to spread out at night, for more than a week. By that yardstick, I’ll be home on Wednesday and you will get delicious audiovisual treatery soon after. For now, though, a brief storytelling interlude via some quick stats written on the dirtiest back pages of my journal.
Up at 04h30. In Entebbe airport by 06h00. On a plane by 08h30 and starting the long trek home. It’s all so managed. So clean. In your seat. Eat your meal. Listen to music or fall asleep for distraction. I feel awry in the whitespace. My clothes are filthy, and probably smell a little.
It’s undeveloped, and it has crap roads – these things are true. But it is also full of really friendly people, to whom we have not had to pay a single bribe, who have really gone out of their way to show us a great time.