It gets harder and harder to define a normal day. With so many projects going, I’m typically pulled in a bunch of directions eery day, and like I’ve said before it’s nearly impossible to figure out in advance how a day will evolve. But it must evolve. I’ve figured out that much. To keep down frustration and make the most of each day, it must naturally evolve.
Today started like any other day: I opened the Keep, and took Declan to school. I had one visitor, Shammime from Magwa School, then ran into Lori, Renee’s mom (servinghischildren.org). She introduced me to John and Cayenne, who were first time visitors to Africa and supporters of their ministry. They came to Uganda to see what Renee’s life was like firsthand. I love it when supporters visit. It’s always exciting to see Africa through their “fresh” eyes, and it’s a reminder of how we felt not so long ago.
John is a technologist and a successful tech business owner, and we had lots to talk about. It felt great to talk to someone technical, spin ideas and just hang out. Aside from the conferences, I rarely get a chance to do that. It was wonderful to geek out for a while. Josh also stopped by, and with his tech background, I was in geek heaven for a while. Josh had come in to pick up a Raspberry Pi I had just finished loading with our beta server build, and conversation naturally turned to the Pi and education. John had lots of great ideas about how to measure the success of our clients and server, and I’m excited to see where that goes. It’s rare to see immediate benefit in our line of work and too often we’re shooting in the dark. It will be good to measure our progress, and if this thing scales up, that kind of data will be critical to education ministries and governments.
Aside from the Pi, which John said was “quite impressive” we talked a lot about cell network technology, John’s real bread and butter. He has a lot of ideas that could transform this country’s Internet infrastructure, and he’s just the guy to pull it of. With his experience and ability, he could make a real difference. I hope to connect him with Daniel Stern, who can connect him to the heads of telcos, to see where that goes.
As was talked, I learned about their plans for the day, and that they were going to spend the day on bodas (motorcycles) bouncing back and forth to a bunch of different things. They asked to see the bed and breakfast, and with a relatively open day ahead of me, I offered to drive them around to their appointments and help in any way I could. So I spent the day with John, Cayenne and Lori. We learned a lot from each other, and they were grateful for the help.
The Keep has become a hub for us, a way to connect with people, learn about them and find ways to help. As a support organization, it’s so important to remain available for opportunities to serve. And today was one of those service days. And I have to say, days like this make me feel like I’m “at one” with why I’m here. This kind of day is what it’s all about: helping people on their journey here in Uganda.
I spent some time overseeing a little stone project in the back yard, outside our guest rooms. The mud back there has become a real problem, especially during the rainy season, so we had to try to do something about it. The cheapest approach was to get quarry stone, level a patio and stairs, and lay it out. We spread sand over the finished surface, swept it, watered it and repeated until things seemed settled. I’m still trying to work out how to seal it but it’s much better than it was.
As is the norm, I spent some time doing tech stuff into the late evening. The client and server builds are finished, and Josh has the first prototype. I started tightening up the installation docs and I’ll post them soon.