9/14/09: Jinja, Uganda
Zhou and I have a long trip ahead of us, so we are closely monitoring what we spend. When the opportunity was brought up a couple days ago for us to join some of our group in white water rafting the Nile for $125 per person, we politely declined.
Today we reached the source of the Nile.
Here at our campsite in Jinja, the river sits in a valley surrounded by lush green forests. It’s much wider than I would have imagined, and I don’t know if it’s the body of water itself or the mystique of being at the Nile, but it has left me in awe each time I have peered at it from the edge of our campsite.
The Nile and its surrounding environment exemplify how much greener and wetter Uganda is than Kenya. Almost as soon as we crossed the border today, the landscape turned green, and the skies turned dark and ominous. Before we arrived at our destination in Jinja, they opened up, leaving a muddy, buggy, nasty campground to greet us.
As stereotypically “safari” as our first night in Lake Nakuru National Park was – the wide open campground under the starry sky, the threat of large, carnivorous animals – tonight will be our first real uncomfortable camping experience. It looks like it is going to rain again, so we will be trapped in our little tent. Geckos line the walls of the toilets, and there are bugs and spiders everywhere. It’s a far cry from our nice bed and air conditioning just less than a week ago.
But the beauty of our surrounding environment, the grandeur of the nearby river and even the thought of the monkeys we’ve seen playing in the trees make tonight one I can’t wait to experience.
And weather-permitting, in two days Zhou and I will be white water rafting down the longest river in the world.
Picture of the Day: In Jinja, Jenga is a real man’s sport. Look at the sweet tower we have going here.