Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Living with Matoke

We packed up and left Mbarara yesterday having to hire a pick-up to move just 3 months worth of accumulated "stuff". Our new home is a bungalow within the Ishaka Hospital compound with magnificent views towards distant hills and the sunset in the west. The Hospital compound occupies an entire hill with the accommodation at the crest and the wards, outpatient department, nursing school and lab technician training school lower down. There is a bustling trading centre outside the gates and a private university with attached brand new teaching hospital being constructed down the road. Our responsibilities for the next couple of months are to look after the medical wards and the outpatient department, and we'll be supported by two Philippino Missionary doctors , one an obstetrician, the other a general surgeon.
Our garden is a permacultural feast with papayas, avocados, and matoke trees. Matokes are the plantains that have been the staple carbohydrate in Uganda for the last 2000 years. Perennial, low maintenance, high calorie and easy to cook they are the ideal food crop and the whole of south-west Uganda is a patchwork of homesteads with attendant Matoke plantations. We have 2 big bunches almost ready to harvest.......

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