Today was one of those days, when everything just works out, when you can feel the energy in the air working in your favor, when you groove into the folds of the universe melting around you, when you dance through each moment, when food tastes sweeter, when music sounds better, when the colors around you seem better. Most would describe this as signs of being in love. And I admit. It’s true.
1) Dr. Dan: A Bright Spot
Dr. Dan is the first S.O.U.L. University-sponsored student. He has a year and a half left of medical school, and recently realized that his passion in life is obstetric fistula corrective surgery (if you don’t know what obstetric fistula is, I won’t describe it here, but please look it up – if you feel moved by the fact that an estimated 3.5 million women are walking around developing countries with this debilitating condition, take a look at Uganda Village Project’s work and make a much-needed donation). Upon completing medical school, Dr. Dan will be the head doctor and medical program director of S.O.U.L.’s future maternal health center. In the meantime, he is a member of the Board of Directors and has been a ROCKSTAR at taking time out of his jam-packed schedule to introduce us to every major contact we need at the district level in Jinja to do our work in collecting this data. Today he made a key connection with the District Health Inspector that we had been waiting for some time on and it went GREAT! Dr. Dan is a bright spot in life here. His wisdom and kind heart combine to form one of the most remarkable human beings you will find anywhere, and I’ve met a LOT of remarkable human beings.
2) Viola’s New Do
We came back to the village and Viola disappeared at lunch. She came back with the most badass hair I have seen on her yet, and the most badass hair in all of Jinja District. She’s the coolest person I could possibly have for a co-fellow. And her fro is the coolest hair I could possibly have for a fro-fellow.
3) THE STORM
I witnessed the CRAZIEST storm I have seen on this continent! The wind was blowing rain and hail in from every single direction while we worked on an awesome new project design for S.O.U.L. from the wi-fi infused comfort of NRE. The power got knocked out over and over, you couldn’t see 20 feet in front of you, and the sky was an absolute battlefield of lightning and thunder. I have a great video that WordPress won’t let me upload and I don’t have patience to figure our how right now. Deal with it.
I came home to my house torn apart. Literally. Huge holes in the walls, crumbled rock and brick and dirt all over the floor, couches overturned, cushions hurled over the dining room table, and these beautiful white cables running up and down our walls. You know what that means. That’s right. DEVIN AND VIOLA ARE ABOUT TO GET ELECTRICITY. Not only did I come back to partially installed sockets and lights in the living room and kitchen as planned, but there’s a fresh new light socket hanging in my bedroom. Light in my bedroom?! I’m going to get to read from bed?! I’d say “the little things,” but this is huge. This is a game changer. I’m so happy I have had the chance to live like the rest of the village lives. But this minimal electricity in this house will make a world of difference in our lives. I’ll talk more on that in a blog when we get juiced up.
After trudging barefoot through the mud home from work with Allison and Musa, we busted out my Frisbee for the first time since coming here and utilized my massive front yard to play for hours as the sun set through the clouds. Musa started the evening as a P1-level Frisbee player (1st grade), and finished the evening in Senior 4 (similar to high school). And the group of children who were previously playing soccer with a ragged ball came and joined, and learned a bit of Frisbee themselves. It was so adorable seeing them scatter in all directions when the Frisbee would come their way, then scramble to grab it and hurl it our way. The game descended into the usual handstand/cartwheel competition.
6) Bonus Reasons
Got great real hugs. Exchanged text hugs with Jonny. Made an amazing dinner of chips and mixed veggies while rocking out to a 2 Many DJ’s Soulwax mix, which led to a dance party in the kitchen with my favorite knife. Safety first. I also revisited an old favorite Tool song, the message of which is far too important to be forgotten – musical therapy to follow my late night outdoor moonlit meditation to Medicine For the People last night by the river. Also, for as big of a movie fanatic as I am, I had yet to watch a movie since coming to Uganda. This changed a few nights ago, and I broke my fast with the newest movie by my favorite comedy writer/director ever, David Wain. The movie is called They Came Together, and it was seriously the funniest movie I have EVER seen. An absolutely absurd nod to my favorite romantic comedy, When Harry Met Sally, We Came Together follows Paul Rudd and Amy Poehler on…well, just watch it, and don’t hate me for recommending it if you’re not cool enough to understand the humor. Then of course, in Jinja today, I see this:
Universe, I am so head over heels in love with you.