Day 6: On Our Way Back Home

Post-procrastination today caused by a puppy

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Who, possibly for the first time in his life, smelled sheep smell today, and wanted to eat it. Don’t worry, Opal was saved. (If you’re wondering why the sock looks the same size as it did last week? It’s actually smaller. I had cast on a random number of stitches that made sense to me while “swatching” in a movie theatre, guessing at the size of an inch and the distance around my leg, and producing a sock too big for an enormously pregnant woman who’s been on her feet all day. So after some real measuring, it was cast on again, this time with the same number of stitches that I would use with a size larger needles. This makes no sense to me.)

My crocheting friend Rachel and I got to play with the above dachsund today while wandering through the mall. While I wouldn’t buy a puppy at a mall (for no higher moral reason than I don’t have that much $ to blow, though puppy mills are bad, and the shelters are full), it’s a fairly regular pasttime to go play with them when I need a little pick-me-up. But the delight of a baby dog, who wanted very much to turn my sandals into shreds of plastic, paled in comparison to my joy when, walking through the wooded path to the mall, I heard the following words come out of Rachel’s mouth: “You should teach me to knit.” Thankfully I was so dumbstruck I don’t think I gushed or said anything too happy-sounding. (The cardinal rule of knitting conversion is to not scare off the proselyte with too much eagerness.) The urge lasted through our arrival back home, where I set her up with the goods, and she took to it like a fish to water. Thanks to years of crocheting prowess (you’ll protest, rach, but you can triple crochet, and I cannot), she intuited Continental style out of thin air, which I can’t do worth beans, and holds her right needle like a pen, which fascinates me. We watched Coraline (so creepy; not a child’s movie, but I guess I liked it) while she hummed along on a new scarf for her little niece.

Anywho, you’re probably not reading this to be reminded of my desire that knitters should take over the world. You’re probably here for the continuing saga of our journey to Uganda… and the Uganda part of the story is almost over.

After Monday’s Rurama trip, we had a day of rest to recuperate from our session of “field work.” We’d gotten enough rest in the afternoons and evenings that we were pretty stir-crazy by the time we’d finished breakfast, so for the first time, we decided to wander about on our own a bit. A short walk took us to the “downtown” of Bushenyi:

where we used an ATM and an internet café.

It was shockingly cheap and numbingly slow, but Jared did manage to email a couple of lucky peeps, and many of you had it confirmed via the email chain that we were, in fact, still alive.

I finished the Hated Sock, which enjoyed one last view from our porch,

Rested so hard that its mate was nearly finished by the time we left, and finished Baby Yoda, or at least all that was possible having forgotten to bring an embroidery needle.

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And, the next day, we finally got a chance to meet with the Bishop of West Ankole, the man in charge of our partnership.

Bishop Yona Katoneene is a delightful fellow. We didn’t get long enough with him to really get to know him very well, but we got on the same page. My first impression of him is that he was jolly. (Jared & I decided from that moment that all bishops ought to be jolly.) My second impression is that he’d probably been through a lot, and his life story would be very worth the hearing. He appreciated the shawls from the Prayer Shawl Ministry at St. Tim’s for himself and his wife, and was moved to learn that they were hand-crocheted and imbued with prayers. Hopefully, the next time we go back will work a little better for his schedule, resulting in a little more time together.

We said a sad goodbye to our last sunset at the Mothers’ Union, and the next morning we packed out and headed for Kampala.

One last night at the Nimarimbe Guest House saw the completion of the California sock (a.k.a. the Hated Sock and Companion)

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And the drive there had resulted in a good bit of progress on the shawl.

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See how the shawl is notably not on a needle? How it is in fact clinging onto life by a long piece of leftover sock yarn? You may wonder what led to this violent needle abandonment. Tune in tomorrow to see why the shawl was forsaken, and to watch as Jared learns to drive on the other side of the road, and we get really good at calculating the value of yarn from South African Rand.

In other news, to yank you unpleasantly back to the present, Baby Yoda did get sewn together:

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And the matching Skywalker boots are completed as well,

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Shown with the yarn left over from the two projects. woohoo! Anytime now, Emily! (Maybe I have to deliver them for them to count.)

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