Linnea Ashley on September 25th, 2010

Iganga Town, UgandaSeptember 25, 2010They smiled at me through my open window, me splayed out in the bed watching a movie on my laptop. I’d just pulled my earplugs out because I…I guess I heard them coming. Our guard grinned down at me as I waved them all in the direction of the front door.There […]

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Linnea Ashley on September 22nd, 2010

by 11am i had been taken advantage of…twice…and was starving and tired. the ride into kampala, which in waiting terms began before 8am, was relatively quick. of course it would have helped if i had printed the conference information. instead i managed a tour of parts of the city i’d never seen, walked through makerere […]

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Linnea Ashley on August 29th, 2010

August 29, 2010 Iganga Town, UgandaFinding the balance is treacherous. Somewhere between apathy-inducing sympathy and hypocritical heartlessness I have to believe lays the way to help people help themselves.I have no delusions of grandeur. No belief that I have solutions to old and complex problems that a whole country and generations of people failed to […]

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Linnea Ashley on August 29th, 2010

It has been raining for hours, a symphony on a tin roof lulling to the patter of flowing tears. I should be sleeping. This is my favorite lullaby. The night wrapping me in a moist embrace and singing sweetly to me. But I find myself stingy with this unquiet. The electricity flashed away by a […]

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Linnea Ashley on August 21st, 2010

August 21, 2010Iganga Town, UgandaI haven’t mastered this pseudo post-colonial era in africa. In truth, this is my first true interaction with the way things probably were. I have a high fence with broken bottles glittering in the sunlight to deter unwanted visitors. And if that fence fails I have an armed guard circling the […]

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Linnea Ashley on August 15th, 2010

August 14, 2010Mabira forest, UgandaThe plastic smoldered, drew itself up from clear blue womanly shapes and bright yellow shopping bags to black jewels glistening on ashen logs. The Ugandan interns burned the plastic we’d all collected – the rubbish that has been strewn haphazardly around the party site.We mzungos* intended to throw it away…where I’m […]

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Linnea Ashley on August 7th, 2010

August 6, 2010We angled the car into a space under the dappled shade of a tree. The dust settling along the dirt road we’d traveled. A cluster of women rose to their feet and began ululating and dancing – voices and hips raising and lowering in circuits of joy.We had arrived.The village was well off […]

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Linnea Ashley on August 7th, 2010

The air is thick and chewy like old gum. Trucks belch black smoke and trash burns in invisible fires in the distance. Bodas (motorcycles), immune to laws of traffic and good sense, weave between cars and -when time and lack of space dictates- speed along sidewalks narrowly missing pedestrians.Kampala isn’t quiet. Colorful buildings in various […]

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Linnea Ashley on April 30th, 2010

They were scattered beneath the sprawling shade of a lone tree reaching for the far-flung gray clouds in a blue sky. When our Toyota pulled up and we all clambered out, no one shifted anything more than a gaze. A child continued to suck from her mother’s breast, another crawled away from his twin, and […]

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Linnea Ashley on April 8th, 2010

Change gon’ come…Time is so relative, despite appearances to the contrary. Sixty seconds to 60 minutes to 24 hours…and days turn into months turn into years. Neat. Orderly. The same for everyone. Except it isn’t.For the last five months time has been this slow moving vehicle transporting me through my Liberian experience. And I had […]

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