Esther News

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Bilder Februar 2006

Bibelkreis, Chor und Weihnachten (Februar 2006)

Agaya at time of admission   (11.02.2006)

Agaya when she came to the Nutrition Unit...

Agaya after rehabilitation  (11.02.2006)

...some days before discharge from the hospital. Once again an impressive change before and after rehabilitation. The mother had acutally brought her to the hospital, because she was unable to walk with 2 years of age. The parents were completely unaware that the main reason for this was malnutrition.

Beer   (11.02.2006)

Part of every feast here is the so-called "local brew", the self-made beer of the locals. It is filled in this huge jars and drunk with special straws. I have never tasted it and I think that it looks so horrible that I even don´t want to. Some people say that some few sips are enough to make someone drunk.

Beer again  (11.02.2006)

If you pass villages during the evening hours you can see everywhere the same picture: people (esp. men) surrounding the beer jars and sucking on their straws.

Fire  (11.02.2006)

From December to January usually the main dry season takes place. Except for 2 to 3 short rain falls this months are completely dry - and this with temperatures of more than 40°C under shade. Therefore the whole environment becomes extremely dry. There is nearly no green plant left. The local people like to clear their fields and gardens during this time which means just to burn everything on it. The authorities are always warning not to do it, because it is dangerous but most people are not listening to this warnings. And it is understandable: it is so easy to clear a field with this method. Therefore you can see everywhere immense fires during the dry season. In the beginning I was really scared but with the time you get somehow used to it.

Gecko   (11.02.2006)

Some time ago we saw a small cat in our garden. We started giving it some milk in the evening hours and since this time it is coming nearly every day waiting us. When we saw it for the first time, it had just catched a big gecko. We were so impressed how this small cat was able to catch and eat such an huge animal that we gave it the name "Gecko". .

Dried cassava   (11.02.2006)

Cassave is a starchy root which is cultivated a lot in this area here. You can eat in in different ways: either you boil it in salty water like potatoes or you can cutt it in pieces and fry it. It is even possible to dry them in the sun and to eat them like potato chips. In this dried form it is possible to store it for a long time period and to grind it to flour. The picture shows us when we went to visit friends in a village. The woman is giving us the dried cassava chips to taste. In the back you can see the local storage system: in this small huts on stands the food is stored. The dress of the lady is the traditional costume of the Iteso.

Chicken in the hospital   (11.02.2006)

If someone wants to express his gratitude, he will give you a chicken. And in this was we received from time to time a chicken from former patients. The first time when one lady came to me and handed over a fluttering chicken I was a bit confused. I didn´t even know how to hold it, let alone how to keep it. But it is not so difficult: it is tied with its legs to a bed or something else in the ward, then you give some millet (which we have always here for the children) and water. After some days you can even release it - it will always come back to the place where it slept the first night. And then one day it will be slaughtered for the children, the staff or for visitors.

Odongo   (11.02.2006)

This 6 year old bay weight only 10 kg when he came to the NU. He was suffering from AIDS and most probably also from tuberculosis. His twin brother died already some years ago. He seems to respond to the rehabilitation inspite of his condition: he gained already 1,5 kg. Eventually we know that his improvement will be only for a short period of time, but in the moment he is regaining at least a bit of his quality of life. Since he is feeling better, we are having a lot of fun with him. He is very interested in technical things. He always tries to have a closer look at my digital camera and my phone. We bought him a toy phone, which he is now carrying around the whole day - even sleeping and bathing with it.

Posho   (11.02.2006)

Posho is a sticky pap made out of maize flour. It is one of the very common staple foods in this area here. On the picture you can see how I am trying to mingle it: first you have to boil water, then you mix the maize flour with some cold water and add this mixture to the boiling water. After some minutes of boiling this thin maize porridge, again a some more maize flour is added. Then you have to mingle seriously, because the pap is becoming as tough as dough for a bread - I really started sweating at this point! Most of the time Posho is eating with red beans, which is usually the lunch and dinner for our mothers, but also for pupils in boarding schools.

Solfa-Notation   (11.02.2006)

Some time ago I joined the choir of the catholic church. In the beginning it was quite difficult, because most of the songs are sung in Ateso and  in addition the notation of  songs is completely different form ours. On the picture you can see a song with all 4 voices in the so-caled solfa-natation.  This way of notation has some advantages: the keys of the scale are called do, re, mi, fa, so, la, ti, do. But only the first letter is written  and the „do“ always starts with the first  note of the respective key. When a new piece of music is studied this letters are used for singing instead of the text, which sounds quite nice because of the vocals.

Sweet potatoes  (11.02.2006)

Sweet potatoes are one of the main staple foods in Uganda. Nearly every one cultivates them in one of his or her gardens. Therefore they are sometimes also served for the leprosy patients who are cared for by the hospital. On this picture the kitchen just completed boiling the sweet potatoes and now they are brought for serving. Most of the time people eat them with beans or with groundnut sauce. But sometimes they are served just like that with  a very sweet milk tea taken as breafast or snack inbetween.

Christmastree  (11.02.2006)

As I wrote already in my last newsletter: there are real christmas trees here during christmas season! The tree on this picture was placed in the room where we have our morning devotions in the hospital together with all hospital staff .

Pictures from Uganda (Februar 2006)

Goats everywhere   (11.02.2006)

Actually all animals except for chickens are forbidden to keep within the hospital area. But unfortunately only few people are following this rule. This goats belong to our neighbour. Usually the goats are tied somewhere with one leg, but in the moment they are running around free very often. Even though there is a fence around our garden it is not really an obstacle for the goats. And thus  our nice garden furniture is often occupied by them.

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