A Travellerspoint blog

January 2014

African Nights

Why earplugs are a great invention

sunny 31 °C

I lay down and slept, yet I woke up in safety, for the Lord was watching over me.
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It’s 3am and still a sultry 24 degrees. The stars look incredible out there as there is no night pollution or cloud cover tonight. I am not a fan of the hot and dry season we’re in (Come to think of it, though, a fan would be a good idea). No getting snug under the covers, there are no need for any covers. Juno, our dog has woken me up with some earnest barking outside. It is a concern, as our night-guard, John, told me that there was an attempted burglary the night before at our neighbour’s place. Thieves were chased off the compound, but not before they had cut open the wire mesh fence to get in. These days, there seems to be far too many stories around here of robberies for my liking.

Thankfully, we now have our solar-powered security lights meaning that even when the town power goes out unexpectedly, there are lights to deter any potential robber somewhat. This early morning, as I walk around the house checking everything at, I relax when I see John patrolling around outside and vow to give him a bonus when I see him before he leaves shift. Most night-guards are fast asleep at this time. They will likely be busy during the day-time as well, like our other night-guard, Rashid, who rides a bicycle taxi during the day, with its large padded seat for passengers.

Getting back to sleep is a problem under the cloak of the tropical heat. The air is punctuated with countless dog voices, giving vent to their excitement. People say that 3-4am is the ‘witching hour’ and it’s easy to believe that when there seems to be a lot going on outside in the blackness.

In the distance, I hear a club playing popular African pop. Though I usually enjoy the tunes, I detest any music at this time of night. I want to be in a deep sleep before 5am when the mosques wake up and their eerie chanting begins around us. It is difficult to tell where these ghostly voices are coming from. Seriously, Islam doesn’t seem to consider a community’s need for rest.

Each day, morning comes too early for me as Amelie wakes with the light between 6:30 and 7am. Ironically, it is the best time for sleeping as it’s cool and quiet.

Posted by africraigs 03:13 Archived in Uganda Comments (4)

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