As my kids study the concept of environmental footprints, we often compare our lives in Canada to our lives in Uganda. Yesterday the truth about western consumption hit home through the lesson of the Croc. The girls brought Crocs to Uganda as a practical, washable kind of footwear and we have indeed got what we considered our moneys-worth out of them. A couple of weeks ago first one Croc and then another was ripped and left to sit on the shoe rack awaiting disposal. After all they weren't really much use right? Enter our ever enthusiastic laundry lady who asked me "Aunt do you want me to take to get fixed?" "Really," was my surprised response. "How much would that cost?" "1000//=" (the equivalent of 40 cents). And so yesterday the Crocs came back stitched up with sturdy thread ready for more footsteps on Ugandan soil. Necessity has taught my friends well. It's a lesson western environmentalists might take to heart.
The house we're currently living in has an abundance of citrus trees in the garden. The trees are now laden with fruit and we're enjoying the freshly squeezed juice. These fruit are also an endless source of confusion to us. You see in Uganda oranges aren't orange and lemons aren't yellow. If you leave them long enough they do turn somewhat orange and yellow but then they're past their best. Not being botanists we find this all quite baffling but then as our Ugandan friends know we're easily confused. The longer we're here the more we realise how much we have to learn and how much we need the wisdom of the One who knows why in Uganda oranges aren't orange.