As we leave our apartment this morning to pick up a few last minute items before the election on Friday the crowds have already started gathering outside our apartment gates. A wave of yellow shirts, hats, signs, horns, etc. line the streets. It is wall to wall people with cars attempting to get through their masses. Screaming, chanting, whistle blowing are just some of the noises. When we are stopped in traffic people are coming by the car window chanting for their candidate.
I look over at Alex and he is just wide eyed at the commotion. He whispers "Mom are you scared?" Of course I had to put my mom face on and say that I was not, but a part of me was certainly uneasy about being in the midst of all of this. Thoughts raced through my mind, especially the one of Steven saying avoid crowds at all cost because you never know what will or could happen. I was somewhat comforted by the fact that Steven was sitting in the car with us, but it was still a little worrisome. However it was certainly a sight to see and experience.. I have never seen anything like this before in all my days.. wow....
What normally takes us a five minute drive took us about 30 minutes because of all the traffic and crowds that were gathered. However, we did finally make it to our store to get food and water to stock up on during the elections. It took us twice that long to get back to the apartment.
As I sit here and write this the people are still gathered all around our apartment complex. Microphones are blarring with the candidate making his promises for a better future for all. One thing about Uganda is they do know how to make noise. Whenever there is a celebration you can count on numerous microphones being in the center of it all. Another thing you can count on is music being played till the wee hours of the morning, horns on cars honking nonstop and people blowing whistles.
There is a certain love of whistles here. They seem to show up at every type of celebration, weddings, parties, elections, whatever the case may be you can always count on someone having a whistle and blowing it nonstop.
Anyway, the elections are Friday and since we are not sure what this will mean my family and I have chosen to live the next few days indoors and avoid the crowds and the traffic. Alex will have his music to keep him company, Steven has a newspaper stashed to read later, and I well I have a book that I am trying to finish. There is always the need to mop the floor because of all the dust so I guess I could do that as well.....NOT.