News

You are Welcome!

Posted on October 16th, 2018 by mikeg

Well I am back in Uganda and I am finally getting down to writing another blog post. It is the short rain season here and we arrived just in time for the daily afternoon thunderstorm.  Which is pretty nice because it cools things down quite a bit.   

Fundraising for this trip took a long time and I can’t say thank you enough to everyone who supported our mission. Without you this trip would not have been possible and I am very grateful.

I have now been back for a couple of weeks and have started to get back into the pace of Africa. As a westerner, it is very easy to get frustrated with how everything seems to just move slower, except for the driving of course. I think African drivers know two speeds…stop and full gas! And everyday things like grocery shopping or buying household goods (soap, shampoo, trash can, dish towels, etc) can take all afternoon as you travel around town from small shop to small shop only to find that the particular item you are looking for is “over”. Instead of saying we are “out of” toilet paper, in Uganda they say that “the toilet paper is over”.

But as frustrating as these inconveniences can be, they are minor and I was overcome with a feeling of “homecoming” when I finally arrived back in Uganda. One of our staff members and his wife were waiting for me at the airport and they had helped to get my apartment set up before I arrived. When I went to church I was able to reconnect with many of the friends I made last year. And as I go back to my regular coffee shops and restaurants and see the same people still working there I get greeted like a long lost relative. Everyone wanting to know how was your trip home, how is your family followed by the obligatory “you are welcome”.

In the US we say you’re welcome when someone says thank you. But here in East Africa, “You are welcome” is a greeting. As in “You are welcome” into my home, “you are welcome” into my restaurant, and “you are welcome” in Uganda. More than that, it is not simply a polite response to a thank you, but a statement that you are in fact welcome.

Now that I am settled in I will try to update this blog regularly with things I find interesting as I travel throughout east Africa. I will be meeting with our staff in Kenya and Uganda as we continue to look for ways to grow the Body of Christ here in Africa. Please continue to pray for our team and our efforts and if you have any questions/comments feel free to email me at mikeg@bwmafrica.org.

 

God Bless,

Mike