tirsdag 15. september 2009

The Trønders:

After a week of too much white bread and chicken & chips, I decided to go running in the morning. To be quite honest; it was a run of misery. Just around the first corner I met two of the huge, long legged, long beaked, not so nice marabou storks feasting in a pile of garbage. They were as tall as me and I was not at all sure it was safe to pass them.

The miserable part of this image was, on the other hand, that behind these to big vulture-like birds, in a smaller garbage pile, was an old lady bent over looking for something to eat or sell. I nearly turned around and went home. Despite the bad start I continued, put the iPod on "Kasabian" and ran faster than normal along filthy water ways, next to slums, jumping over pot holes the size of my self, navigating between people people people, boda-bodas, taxis and huge cars, through dirty commercial streets with buildings looking like they are about to fall down, passing police with shotguns left over from the French revolution, all the time navigating after the minaret of the big mosque on the hill and being the only white person around.

When exercising for the fun of it in these surroundings, I felt kind of stupid, very rich, privileged and kind of superficial. I’m running to keep my body and mind in order, but I have to. The people I passed are working so hard just to make a living. It puts things in perspective.

So, after a refreshing, but not so uplifting morning run, Andreas and I once again went out to find someone to work with. Hans had talked about Newplan, a branch of the Norwegian company Norplan, that might have some architecture or planning projects on the run. A call from the Norwegian professor Cato Lund (who works here at Makerere) made them agree to have a meeting with us. One thing let to an other, their man Lawrence was very helpful, and suddenly we were offered to come to study a resettlement project they had going in Bugoye (in the west of Uganda). We even found out they did this in collaboration with Newplan and Trønder Power(!). It was surreal to meet mr. Gunnar in an african office in the ugandan capital. Even more surreal was the fact that he knew my father. It's a small world...

They were very positive towards student like us, and we even got offered to have a working space at their facilities (which are equipped with internet through satellite connection!)

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