Monday, November 21, 2011
Saturday, I had the extraordinary opportunity to kayak down the White Nile. A friend of my daughter brought an inflatable kayak to South Sudan. My daughter drove us into the countryside, to a nice quiet spot at the banks of the While Nile and we loaded up and took off. The current is very strong and it was work to get across the river to a quiet channel, from then on I lay back and let my guide and the current do the rest. It is not as lush and tropical here as I might have expected, largely because it’s the dry season. But the mango trees are large and green and papyrus grows along the banks.
Children were getting water and people crossing in boats carved out of tree trunks, either poling across or using shovels as paddles. We saw plenty of birds – no crocodiles though.
When we approached town (and the only bridge for the next 1200 KMs) we stopped at a restaurant for a beer. Then on for another while to where my daughter waited for us quite near to her house.
A really lovely outing.
I took this picture of a ladder at a construction site. I wonder what the WCB would have to say about that.
I’m writing this at a compound on the banks of the Nile on Sunday, just relaxing and having a drink and reading (Pirate King by Laurie R. King, if you’re interested). The mango trees are ripe and children are collecting the fruit. A sudden wind just came up and the mangos are dropping to the ground, and the umbrella tops, and the roof of the bar hut like explosives. At first we thought the children were running in fear, but nope they’re busy collecting the fruit. The cooks came hurrying out of the kitchen as well, armed with buckets.
I think Mango salsa is on the menu for tonight.
Incidentally the compound I’m reading in right now is where George Clooney stays when he’s here on humanitarian aid missions. No George sighting as of yet; I’ll keep my eyes open.
I checked with my housesitter yesterday. She tells me it’s turned quite cold in Ontario. Nice to be basking in the heat here in South Sudan on the banks of the While Nile.