Monday, August 2, 2010

An Acholi Wedding

Admittedly, I have been terrible about writing lately. It just ends up that over time, one grows accustomed to the daily grind, and things just don't seem exotic or fantastic as they used to, once the romance wears off. And admittedly, I have been so so busy, it's been hard to find even a minute to spare.

(I wish I could remain sitting outside at sunset just now, but it also happens to be the mosquito's favorite time too...)

The Head of Region was gone for ten days on break, so added to my regular work, much of his duties fell upon me. This coincided with a complete Salary Review, which left some staff discontented with their low increases (yes, everyone got a raise, but some didn't think it was enough...). It also meant I attended more meetings on behalf of the organization, signed more forms than I ever wanted (the salary review was 6 pages per person, 70 people...), and had to report back on every little event in Northern Uganda.

To add to this, the Assistant Wash PM was out on break for a week, and I have to organize a 4 day training with District officials. Now, this might not seem like a difficult task, but when most live in Gulu town, a mere 1.5 hours drive from their offices, it's hard to get them to show up by 11, or even at all. So it's been a pretty hectic couple of weeks, and if you thought it was lucky or interesting that I am required to take a week-long break every three months, I finally realized WHY they force this upon me, and I am looking forward to my break more than I ever thought possible - I finally realized that they weren't kidding when they said I'd need it. I do. I really, really do.

On the 17th, I went to the wedding of one of my coworkers. They said it would be a traditional wedding, but it was more like a normal wedding, only African. The only major difference was the dancing group that was hired to come and perform traditional Acholi dances and songs. Boy did those old ladies get a kick out of this white girl trying to copy their dances! And it was hard, not to mention SO hot out in the sun, but it was fun fun fun! I think I am going to try to find out when they practice and join them one night a week.

The dances all have meanings here, from the stories they tell about two young loves who go to the woman's parents to ask permission (acted out) to the young boys swooning over (and around) the hip-thrusting young ladies as a invitation dance.

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