5/16/21 From the Heart of Uganda: Business & Personal Thoughts with VP, Charlie Hedges.
5/16/21 Sun 9:30 PM from Millennium Hotel
Although today is normally a day off, Adrian once again was forced to “baby-sit” me for two lunches: first with Vijay Reddy, president of EAB (one of our drilling contractors) to enjoy homemade Indian food. Indians eat VERY spicy food so they tamed it down for us. For the second lunch, two hours later, we visited Pascal’s home and met with his family.
One thing I love is experiencing different cultures, with their customs and habits. Today I experienced two very different cultures: Indian and traditional Uganda. The food and hospitality were very different. With Vijay, because we arrived at 1:00 PM before their normal lunchtime they fed us but did not join us for the meal. In fact, we sat in a small living room, our food served on our laps on the sofa while everyone watched Miss Universe on the TV. Although they were enormously kind and hospitable, it was not the kind of reception one might expect in the home of a new acquaintance in the USA.
We then moved on to Pascal’s home, filled with children and charming conversation. The reception and hospitality was more like what one might expect in the US. We played with the kids (under 3 years old), conversed with the family, and ate a meal all together. The meal was goat meat (delicious!), matoke (bananas prepared like very thick mashed potatoes), and rice. I drank the juice of pure cane sugar, quite unusual tasting yet very tasty.
One thing: in each household, we were asked to remove our shoes before entering. That is the one similarity.
Tomorrow, Monday, I visit with Joseph Luzige, the outgoing chairman of Mityana, do some writing and recording of notes, and then return to the WOL office to continue planning with Adrian and Pascal.