Tom Herriman's Journal
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News and Views
October 7, 2007-Njovu Rest House
I have a room in a little motel across the street from the school called the Njovu Rest house. It is clean and comfortable, but many of the guests play music and football games until late at night and the sound reverberates around the courtyard. Same infrequent electrical service here, but I do quite fine with my collection of flashlights, book lights, and candles. I have my own toilet and shower, and there is cold and cold running water. Since this is on the equator, cold is not very cold, especially after the sun has been beating down on the water tank all day.

The weirdest thing about the motel is the doors to the rooms. They are heavy welded steel with bars across a little narrow window. You secure the door from the inside with two bi iron deadbolts, and you do the same when leaving by reaching in through a little hinged hatch in the door which you then padlock. So when anyone enters or leaves their room, there’s a tremendous amount of clanging and clatter.

I gave my first guitar lesson today to one of the assistant teachers, Olivia, who is a student at Makerere university business school. She’s training in human resources and wants to work for a big corporation, but everyone says there’s a very high rate of unemployment among university grads, and job prospects are dim. She’s working at the school because her uncle is Jimmy Kiboku who runs the non academic side of things at the school.

On Saturday and Sunday there is a steady stream of visitors for Jimmy at the school. He’s also the district administrator, and elected political job, and people come to him with problems to solve. Most of the problems are disputes about inheritance of property. Someone dies and wants to leave more property to one offspring than another. Then the slighted offspring goes to court and comes to Jimmy to try to get the inheritance turned around.