THE LAST SUPPER

In my previous blog I told you about our birthday celebrations which we had annually as a group of close friends. In 2017 we had our usual celebrations for everybody and when it came to September, it was our youngest friend’s birthday but we couldn’t celebrate her on her birthday because many of us were unavailable and she wasn’t feeling well  health-wise  so we decided to postpone the celebration. However the postponement took much longer than we had expected. So towards the end of October we decided to fix a date when we could celebrate her.

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On that day we booked a table at one of the fancy restaurants in Kampala where we would have dinner that evening. That particular friend was still not feeling well that day but we forced her to come because we didn’t want it to spill to November. She was not badly off after all; she was just under the weather due to an intruding cold.

That particular dinner was different from the usual dinners that we had previously. This time everybody was so happy and we wear in jubilation mode. Its not like we were never happy on the previous dinners but there was something different about this one. When we got to the restaurant, we were all very excited to see each other. It was as if we had not seen each other in years. We hugged and laughed and didn’t even complain about the usual latecomers. Even the birthday girl was very happy despite the fact that she was not feeling well. It was so beautiful. The restaurant complimented our mood because it was warm and serene. It was a perfect choice for a perfect evening.

We ordered our food and a bottle of wine. Meanwhile we had conversation about different things and we laughed a lot. Our food finally came and it was as good as the evening was. We laughed a lot about anything and everything as we ate. I smile even as I write about it reminiscing how beautiful it was.

Usually, after we have dinners of a similar nature, we have deep conversations that most of the time turn into an argument where one or two people end up crying either because they were not feeling heard or they were genuinely hurt. However, this dinner ended differently. One person decided give a small speech about the birthday girl. That is when all the magic begun. She said so many nice things, not only celebrating the birthday girl but also celebrating all of us. Then everyone else followed suit, speaking vulnerably, reminding us of the times we have been there for each other. It was so emotional, people cried, laughed, hugged and apologized to each other. Almost everyone cried that evening.

The waiter came to tell us that the restaurant was about to close and we should be winding up. We did not want to hear any of that. Instead we ordered another bottle of wine and a few B52s.

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We then started to speak about the birthday girl. We poured out our hearts about the way we felt about her. No one reserved anything that night. We went all out pouring out our hearts out to her; how we genuinely felt about her and how much we all loved her even with her “Lugezigezi.” And then finally, we prayed. Usually we ask our friend Shane to pray but this time everyone prayed. We spoke blessings and life to our friend and her young family; we spoke perfect health to her. Generally we blessed her, her marriage and her baby. She kept saying in her ever so sweet voice “Amen Thank you, thank you.” After refusing the restaurant to rush us, and when we were finally done, we departed for our respective homes.

That is the one birthday celebration we talked about for a long time. We would laugh about how we cried for nothing. We would laugh about the way sung and turned every word into a song that night. The memories about that particular dinner are still so warm and pleasant. Little did we know it was the last birthday we were celebrating with her alive.

Exactly two months later, our friend Katsy breathed her last. It was then that we understood why the day we celebrated her birthday was different. God works in mysterious ways, sometimes we don’t understand the things of God and they only make sense much later. It was after she died that we realized that that was her LAST SUPPER!

#KeepReigningInGloryKatsy

#WeWillMeetAgain

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THE SURPRISE BIRTHDAY BOAT CRUISE

People who know me well know that I do not like surprises because most of the time it turns out not to be a surprise as I will have found out before its executed and yet I have to pretend to be surprised. It usually is so much work and so I usually prefer to be part of the planning.

My close friends and I always celebrate each other on our birthdays. Usually we opt for dinner at a fancy restaurant or a spa treatment, or a house party, and go all out. The rest of the girls always treat the birthday girl. And that has been the norm year after year. We always looked forward to the birthdays. The funny thing is that it was always designed to be a surprise. So during a specific person’s birth month, we created a group alienating that person so as to plan what to do for them on their birthdays. The planning was exciting especially if we planned something that “different” from the usual. I didn’t like the surprise bit because I told my friends that we do it every single year and am sure people are no longer surprised. I would always argue with them that we are forcing people to pretend. Subsequently I would tell them not to try surprising me because the moment one of them invites me for dinner or a treat of any kind in November, I automatically knew its my birthday “surprise.” So I got to a point where I stopped pretending to be surprised. Please also note that there was always that one confused person in the group that forgot and threw her idea on the main group page on which the birthday person is (Barbs kajambo).

We usually combined birthdays for people born in the same month. Two of us in the group are born in November. However, due to many complaints about combining our celebrations (speak of beggars with choices), we decided to give Sheila her own dinner so I could also have my own celebration. As usual we created a group that alienated her. After making our plans, a few of us sent regrets that they were unable to attend which I found very strange. We went for the dinner and out of eight only five that attended. After the dinner I sent my heartfelt disappointment on that private group to all the ones that missed because to me, they should have cancelled their other things as this had been planned long ago. They sent their apologies and life went on. Of course my birthday was a few days after hers and I knew they were planning something for me too. I was so nosey I kept trying to guess what they were planning. Occasionally I would remind them on our group chat that I do not want a surprise. It is a beautiful thing to have good friends who completely get you. My friends mastered the art of ignoring me and my demands and/or complaints. They simply said they would celebrate me the way they want to. They also said they were not going to surprise me since I have always made my stand on surprises clear.

As friends, we have monthly fellowships where one person hosts a fellowship at home every month. The timing of this fellowship was suspicious for me because it was around my birthday weekend. I had told these girlfriends of mine countless times that I did not want a surprise. “They think I don’t know that they have set up at the hosts home so that they can surprise me.” I thought to myself. “I will make it hard for them this time.” So I told them I was not going to be able to attend fellowship. When they asked why, I told them I had something to attend to. They insisted and when they did, I knew I had busted their plot. I even told my husband that I know they are planning to surprise me and he laughed and told me to just play along and I accepted.

Two of my friends who stay in the same neighborhood picked me up and together we went to pick up another friend (the other November baby) then head to Kyaliwajjala for the ‘fellowship’. As soon as our friend was ready (the one whom I share a birth month with), we headed out of the house and right at the exit of her back door, the other girls showed up shouting “SURPRISEEEEE.” I was shocked. I looked around me and there was nothing spectacular or sign of birthday anything at my friend’s house. Worse still she was too seemed genuinely confused as she kept asking, “WHAT IS GOING ON?” and the other girls were like “SURPRISE TO BOTH OF YOU.” We were very confused. We were at her house and there was nothing going on there. We were supposed to be going to Kyaliwajjala for a fellowship but our host was here shouting “SURPRISE.” I was so curious to see what was up these girls’ sleeves.

They took us outside where a van was waiting for us. We entered the van and the driver started driving us to an unknown destination. The mood was so cheerful, the music was loud and there was wine too. This was not the direction I expected this day to take. Of course I started trying to guess where we were being taken. I made many wrong guesses but eventually when we got onto the Kigo road, I figured it would be Serena. “Wow, lunch at the Serena is a great idea and different from dinner.” I thought to myself. Usually when we had dinner at the Serena it was in Kampala. So lunch out of town was a great idea. We could not contain our excitement.

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However, when we got there, we were led to the dock and we were showed the boat in which we were going to spend the next two hours. The excitement we had was out of this world.

Our friends had managed to surprise us without us suspecting a thing. Even though I tried to sabotage them, I was not successful. The boat had loads to drink and loads of good music. We laughed about anything and everything and they especially laughed at my futile attempts to burst their plans. After the cruise, we were on time for dinner. The meal was so delicious over a good doze of laughter. Of course there was cake to cut.

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My friends really went all out for us. My heart was full. And that was my unforgettable birthday surprise. Thank you my lovely friends….

BEHIND THE SCENES


Many times when friends plan and agree to take a holiday, it usually is the beginning of stress from that time until they finally take the holiday (if they do)

I will tell you about my own experience. In 2014, my friends and I had a discussion about going on a holiday together. We were all excited by the idea and started making plans, brainstorming where should go, what we wanted to do etc. So when we had discussed all that and zeroed in on a place to go, we then started brainstorming the possible dates. Whatever date was suggested was not possible for at least one or two people. It was so frustrating because we all wanted to go together and so it was impossible for us to agree on a date that was favorable for all of us. Eventually we managed to get a suitable date for everyone after so many back and forth suggestions. We were happy we were making progress. Now all that was left was saving for the holiday.

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About two months to our travel date, we started talking about booking flights and making hotel reservations and that’s when the stories started. One friend said “guys I don’t think I will make it. The timing is not favoring me as I had put my money into something but I have not got my returns yet.” ‘Let the stories begin’ I thought to myself. “Oh but you knew about this long ago and we had already agreed to save and prepare in advance. We have known about this for months” retorted most us. “I know guys and I am sorry. I miscalculated my timing.” “You just can’t do that to us. What’s the point if you have to miss?” Responded someone from the group. “Bambi you guys go on without me. You shouldn’t cancel because of me please.” And just like that the holiday spirit was dampened and needed a special kind of motivator on the group to revamp it. Before we knew it, the year was ending and we had not gone on our once enthusiastically planned holiday.

Around April 2015, we decided to give it another shot. We swore that we were serious this time and we were going to see our holiday plans through. The good thing is we already had a destination. Now all we needed was a date and money. We eventually decided to set the date for January the next year because it was a good time to shop (a girl’s best pass time). Surely we had enough time to save so that we had no “December holiday” excuses. However, as time went by, we discovered at different times that four of our friends out of the eight were pregnant. That is the true definition of bitter/sweet news!

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This time we decided that the four of us would proceed with our plan to travel. So we continued organizing ourselves, trying to look for the best accommodation packages, an activity itinerary and so forth. One of the friends we were travelling with has a sister who lives in the country we had planned to go. She talked to her sister who agreed to host us for the seven days we planned to be there. We were so relieved because that meant we were saving on accommodation. We started focusing on getting best flight deals. We were on the Internet everyday looking for flights until we finally got what we believed to be a good deal. We were getting closer and the excitement was building up. However, another friend broke the news to us that she would not be travelling with us for reasons beyond her control. To say we were disappointed would be understating it. But we had gone too far to cancel and so the three of us continued with our plans.

As the days went by and our excitement kept building, one of our friends sent a message on our private travel group that we had set up. She said she was unable to travel with us because her husband had refused. You see, her husband was out of the country and so he said he did not want her to leave their children behind without any parent. We asked her about the option of leaving the children with her parents, which is something they often did, but she said her husband had refused. We found that not only unfair to us but also very frustrating because the two of them had gone on holiday together before leaving their children behind with their grand parents. Why was it different this time? We told her we had gone too far for her to drop out; besides, it was her sister going to host us so how would we be there without her? She said her sister’s invitation still stood even without her. We begged her to talk to her husband again. The next day she said she had managed to convince him and so we should continue to make our plans together.

After a week, she called me sounding really low. I asked her what was wrong and she told me she was not coming with us. I was very upset to hear that. I asked her why she was not coming this time and she was not being clear. Eventually she said it was because of her babies. I asked what about them? She said she was going to leave them for a whole week and she would over miss them. I wanted to slam my phone on my windscreen. “WHAT?” “Are you kidding me?????? Seven days?? Last year you went globetrotting around the world for a whole month and now 7 days have become a big deal??” This was out right selfish and totally unfair. I called our other friend and told her everything. She was as mad as I was. We had a conference call where we scolded her until she finally succumbed and said she would travel. And this back and forth with this particular friend continued almost until a week to our scheduled travel date.

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If you think that was stress, keep reading and then you will have a new definition for stress in a few seconds. So our friend’s sister had promised to host us for the week and so as we planned, accommodation was not part of our budget. Three weeks to our travel date however, our friend received a long message from our host, her sister, telling her she was not going to host us because she just realized that in the past couple of weeks she had hosted many people and her little toddler was missing her room. She said, after many people visiting her she was no longer willing to host her “gang of friends.” We were so deflated we didn’t even know what to say. Please note this was only three weeks to our holiday. We had not only to start looking for accommodation but also the money to pay for it. Where were we going to start?

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We quickly snapped ourselves out of the pity party and started looking for good, affordable accommodation. Dubai is a pretty decent place and we found a number of good places. However, the word of God is ever so true. His word says in Romans 8:28 “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” That verse came to life when we narrated the story of our last minute disappointment to someone close to one of us. The person then offered to pay for any accommodation of our choice. Yes you read that right, ANY ACCOMMODATION of our choice. Well there is no money for guessing how this story ends!!! If anyone saw our excitement on the way to the airport, or when we landed, or when we got to our hotel suite, they would never begin to imagine what we went through behind the scenes.

 

THE BUNGEE JUMP

Despite my thrill for adrenaline rush, I had always feared bungee jumping because it seemed a lot more risky and yet its risk was not spread or shared (if that makes any sense) You see, with other similar adventures, usually there is a second or third party involved. For example, with skydiving, one is not allowed to do it alone unless they have done in a minimum of eight hundred times with someone else. On a roller coaster, there are always other people and so one cannot take a rollercoaster ride alone. With the bungee jump on the other hand, firstly your legs are tied together with a thick towel (basically you cannot walk after that, you can only jump). Your gear is tied to ropes and therefore your life depends on their strength. So really bungee jumping was not my kind of thrill.

However, after sky diving, I was looking for the next adventure to nudge my adrenaline and I could only think of the bungee jumping. I called my brother and told him we needed to go to Jinja to bungee jump. Of course my brother was excited. However, the time we planned to go, something came up at work and I could not go and my brother had to go back to school so we postponed it. However, an opportunity came for me to travel to Zimbabwe and I had a light bulb moment. How about jumping off the Shearwater Bridge? I was suddenly excited about it and started to prepare myself even mentally for it.

The day finally came. After visiting the Victoria Falls, my friends and I decided to take a walk across the boarder to Zambia where the bridge is. I tried to convince them to do it with me but they could not hear it. After paying and taking a shot or two of Jameson, I walked to the bridge. I was then dressed up in the protective gear and briefed about what I had to do.

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When they were done preparing me, they moved me to the edge of the bridge and it is when I looked down to where I was going to jump that I realized I must have made the biggest mistake of my life. I told the guides that I had changed my mind. They laughed at me and told me I could not change my mind because I would regret it for the rest of my life. After some convincing I did the brave thing.

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I allowed to be pushed off the bridge into the Zambezi River.

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I do not know how to explain my feelings when I had just been pushed off and as I dropped 115 meters into the Zambezi. It was the freeing feeling I ever experienced. I thought of R. Kelly’s song “I believe I can fly” as I spread my arms and literally flew down…

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It was AMAZING!!! Yes I would do it again.

THE SKY DIVE

I have always loved any activity that gives me the adrenaline rush. Growing up I remember when we went on holiday and visited a theme park, I was always looking out for the most intense roller coaster rides. I would stand in the line for up to sixty minutes patiently waiting for my turn to have that adrenaline rush experience. I remember my brother and I walking around to look for the next “challenge.” It was so exciting.

One would think that I would outgrow the urge to take part in “dare devil” activities, but not just yet. When I was at university, one nice summer day I was riding on the bus with a friend of mine when we saw a theme park we never knew existed in that area. I was so excited I wanted to jump off the bus but it was a tad too late as we had passed the nearest bus stop and the next stop was far. So when we got to campus, I convinced my friend that we needed to find time and go back. That was not his cup of tea but he allowed to go with me anyway. The next day, we got onto the bus and headed to the theme park. It was a little bit of a disappointment because there was no “drastic” or potentially “thrilling” ride in sight. So I chose one that seemed a little close. I convinced my friend to go with me because it was not too deadly after all. I will never forget his expressions and words while we were on that ride. “Oh my God, this is a disaster.” He said as he held onto the rail in front of his sit while closing his eyes. I remember laughing throughout the ride because I couldn’t believe someone would be so scared of such an easy ride (well, compared to the ones I had done before)

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Fast forward, after having my babies I was convinced I had outgrown my urge to satisfy my adrenaline rush desires. So while my friends and I planned a holiday to Dubai, and my friend was making a booking to sky dive, I told her I was not interested because I was not sure my heart could take it any more. However, when I escorted her and saw those people jumping off the plane, I instantly had a ‘relapse’. I was convinced that my heart could bear it. I wanted to jump off that plane too. So I tried to pay but I was told the day was fully booked but they were going to put me on the waiting list incase someone did not turn up. Well that did not happen. Everyone turned up and that is how I missed out. However, the urge remained on my heart for the next one year until I visited Cape Town

It was November 2017 when my mum and I went to Cape Town to surprise my brother for his birthday. When I learnt that we could sky dive in that beautiful city, I thought it was a perfect opportunity for us to do it because my brother has always been my partner in crime when it came to adrenaline rush adventures. So skydiving was a perfect activity for his birthday celebrations.

When we got to the skydiving place, I was filled with excitement and anxiety all at the same time. Was I too old for that now? I started getting second thoughts as I was being prepped for the dive. Supposing one of those rare accidents occurred? I would then look at my brother and his friend and they were so excited and then it rubbed off on me. Eventually we were ready and we were led to a very tiny plane.

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We were six people on the plane minus the pilot because each one of us had to dive with an expert. The plane was so tiny we had to sit between each other’s legs (Literally). The plane flew for about fifteen minutes until we could no longer see the beautiful beach below. While we flew, there was a strong turbulence that really gave us a fright. At that point I started to think about my children whom I had left at home. Supposing I didn’t even make it to the dive? “Was risking my life worth such this dive?” I thought to myself regretfully. My thoughts were quickly interrupted when the guy I was going to dive with told me to get ready because we were about to dive. He asked me to move closer to him so he could chain me to his parachute. Then we moved to the exit of the plane and he opened the tiny door. He gave me a quick reminder of what I was supposed to do as we sat at the exit with our legs swinging in the air. Then he asked, “Are you ready to dive?” As I started to answer “Y…” before I could finish the word ‘yes’ he had pushed me and we were literally flying.

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I opened my eyes and saw the whole world underneath me. The rush I got from flying for those few seconds before the parachute was opened was indescribable. Those twenty or so seconds qualify on my list of “one of the best twenty seconds of my life.” It is one of the most memorable days of my life. And Yes, I can and will do it again if God wills.

 

THE SCAR OF LOVE

When I was pregnant with my first born, one of the things I was sure I did not want was to have a C-section. I had heard about the pain it came with vis a vis the pain of natural birth. I had heard about how it took much longer to heal and of course the scar it left across your bikini line. Oh I was determined to push. However, because I was small bodied, my obstetrician told me he needed to check if my pelvic bones were able to push the baby. Hearing him say that I would be able to push the baby was some of the best news I got during that pregnancy.

I started preparing myself for the D-day in the best way I knew how. I took long walks as often as I could, I read all the possible articles I could about how to handle labour pains and child birth, I watched all the You Tube videos on what to do and what not to do when it came to pushing your baby during child birth. As the time drew nearer, I felt ready, I felt well prepared. I knew how to breathe and how to reserve my energy.

My son William had staged a 42-week sit in and his time in there was up. On 18th November 2008, my doctor told me that he had to carry out an emergency C-section on me because it was not possible for me to have my baby the ‘natural way’. Apparently I had no amniotic fluid and therefore I could not be induced. THIS WAS NOT THE PLAN!!! It was not how I envisioned my story to end. Anyway it was an emergency and it was carried out a little more than two hours later. The procedure went perfectly well, there was no pain or complication.

The next morning is when I realized I had a huge plaster on my bikini line. I had not noticed because I was so busy obsessing over my new bundle of joy. It was after I noticed that I started to think about all the fears I had about giving birth by C-section. I am obsessed with keeping my body in good shape. But I had heard that with a C-section I couldn’t even work out until a minimum of six months after the operation lest I rapture my scar. Oh the thoughts that were going through my mind. All my plans to get my pre-pregnancy body back quickly were ruined. As I was losing myself in the negative thoughts, a cry from my baby brought me back to the room.

When I was discharged, I was in so much pain due to the operation but whenever I held my baby in my hands, I did not even think about the pain. My heart was filled with so much joy. I felt a kind of love I never knew existed inside of me. When the bandage was taken off, the pain started to fade away slowly and before I knew it, I was not feeling any pain.

Four years down the road, I was back in the theatre to have my second baby. I learnt that they cut the same place which was a relief because in my naivety I was wondering how I was going to handle two scars yet I didn’t want even one in the first place. The pain this time around was not well managed and so it seemed much worse than the first one. I remember asking the nurse to add me painkillers only for her to say she could not add me any more because she will be overdosing me. The next morning I told the doctor I needed stronger pain medication because the one he had given me was not working. He obliged to change my medication and subsequently the pain eased out. It was only two years later that I was back in the theatre. (The good thing is that I never once swore that I would never go back) The process was pretty much the same both before and after the procedure.

By the time I had the third baby, I was used to my scar and I had come to terms the scar that reminded of my babies. In fact, I believe I had grown to love that scar so much because you see, that C-section was the reason my children are in this world.

My attitude towards that scar dramatically changed because I realized there was more to life than a “beach body.” Now every time I look at it, I am reminded that God gave me a chance to partner with Him, to bring children to this world and be His Steward at raising them.

Because of that scar, I have been given a chance to be a better person through the practice of patience. Before I had my babies, I really preferred things to be done my way and my time. After they babies, they make a demand and you respond. Mostly it is their way their time. I mean if she wakes up at night and needs to feed, you cannot tell her to wait till morning or till you have exhausted your sleep. And if she is taking her time while feeding, you cannot rush her because you need to go back to sleep. You just have to patiently wait till she finishes. I am not even going to talk about the burping after she has fed.

Someone once said, “Scars are tattoos with better stories.” That could not be truer about my C-section scars. My scar is evidence of a wonderful story of perfection in my life. It is also a reminder that my heart has always had an overflow of love even when I did not know it. Most important of all, my scar is a reminder that God really favors me.

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IAM GRATEFUL TO GOD FOR MY SCAR OF LOVE.

 

CHINA EXPERIENCE PART 5- FINAL DOSE

The morning after our fabulous night, I felt well rested and refreshed. However, we didn’t know what we were going to do the whole day seeing as we had done most of the spa treatments the previous evening. We then decided to take a risk and adventure the streets of Guangzhou without a guide. It was our last day in China and it sounded like a good idea and so we went for it.

At the reception, we told them we were going out for a few hours but were not yet checking out. We handed over our locker room hand bands and requested for a taxi, which we found already waiting for us.

My friend knew a place we could go to do some last minute shopping so she told the taxi driver where we were going. Unfortunately, although we had a general idea of where we were going, we did not know how to get there from where we were. So when the cab driver finally stopped the cab and said we had arrived and upon seeing nothing familiar, we told him that was not the place. Because of the language barrier, he was unable to explain to us that it was and so he continued driving but little did we know he was taking us further away from the place. Eventually we just asked him to stop and we started walking back. After a bit of a trek, we starting recognizing some familiar shops and that is when we realized that the driver had earlier dropped us at the right place only that it was from the back.

When we were done shopping, we decided to get a cab back home and that is when the drama started. The first cab we stopped, the guy spoke in Chinese and the moment we started speaking in English, he just drove off. Same thing happened with the next couple of cabs and we started getting concerned. Why was everyone driving away from us?

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Eventually one cab stopped and we told him the name of the hotel. He asked for the address and just then we realized we did not have the address of the hotel and we had no idea which area it was. My friend had a Chinese line so we tried to call our guide to ask him which area the hotel was and the network completely betrayed us. We tried to use WeChat to call and then we realized we had run out of data. The only option we had was voice calls and the network was so bad we could hardly hear each other. Before long, the guy asked us to get out of his car so he could take other customers. We were totally stranded and we felt so hopeless. We decided to say a prayer and then walked away from that area slowly as we kept trying our luck to wave down any cabs that drove by. Eventually God sent one cab that stopped for us and then we were back to the battle of the address. We told him it’s the hotel where there is a 24-hour spa. The language was a barrier but he was very patient with us. He asked if we had any documentation that might have the address and we just did not have anything. We had carelessly omitted to carry the hotel’s business cards that were at the reception. We were getting really frustrated and then “WAIT,” my friend said excitedly. “I might have something.” She started searching her bag and there it was! The tag for our bags storage; it had the address. The RELIEF!! In no time we were back at the hotel.

After having a late lunch and parking our bags, we were ready to go to the airport and our ever-efficient guide was ready waiting for us. Of course being girls, we managed to delay him a good number of minutes subsequently falling behind schedule. What was supposed to be a relaxed ride to the airport suddenly became a mad rush. As we sat at the back of the car pretending to converse in order to distract ourselves from the speed at which our guide was driving, there it was; A big BANG!!! He had hit the car in front of us. The bang was so loud we were startled. He had to switch off the engine to go and talk to the person he had knocked. Suddenly the time we were trying to save was fading right before our eyes. When they were done with their negotiations, we were back on the road and this time the already high speed was doubling because we had lost even more time. Thankfully we got there on time.

We tried to check ourselves in on the self-service machines but failed and so we decided to join the check in queue. Although we spent quite some time checking our luggage in, we were let through and that is when the drama started. Our flight was scheduled to take off in about one hour; however, the immigration line was so long we didn’t know if we would make it. Whereas my friend was so nervous about the time, I kept assuring her that they would give us priority in case our flight was about to take off. I was speaking from experience albeit from Europe, it is supposed to be common sense right? It was not the case in China. We were losing so much time and we were not getting any help through the queues.

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We attempted to talk to the policeman to allow us go through as by this time we had only 30 minutes before takeoff and he refused. He said we had enough time. When we saw a policewoman letting some people through, we ran to her and showed her our boarding passes and we begged her to let us through because our flight was taking off in 20 minutes. She immediately closed the barrier and said she was not allowed. We were becoming more desperate and hopeless.

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We had already been in China too long we were not ready to spend another night. However, we were definitely going to miss our flight because by this time boarding had even closed. At that point, a French gentleman (bless his soul) looked at my boarding pass and advised that we pass under the barriers and run to the counter. I followed his advice and my friend and another Ugandan gentleman we had met at the airport followed me closely. When we got to the front, I begged loudly enough to embarrass anyone who dared to say no; I said my flight was taking off in 15 minutes as I showed the immigration officer my boarding pass. She immediately let us through. Fortunately for us we found one of the airport cars that took us direct to the aircraft.

The only thing the lady at the gate said was “you are very lucky, I was about to close.” I have never been happier to be on my way back home. China!!! What an experience.