When I Hear the Word Uganda Essay

Submitted By rileyannnelson
Words: 1119
Pages: 5

When I hear the word Uganda What do you think of when you hear the word Uganda? Do you see Uganda on a map? Do you work your brain to remember its location? Or do you not know what Uganda means at all? The answer is similar for most. Uganda is a country located in Central Africa, but for me, Uganda is much more than just a country. My answer goes much deeper. I have personally experienced the well known Pearl of Africa, and I have discovered, first hand, why it is referred to as a pearl. So what do I think of when I hear the word Uganda? The first thing that storms my mind is the smile of the children I came to love as if they were my own. Their smiles are so genuine that it seems far from real. It was once said the eyes are the window to the heart, but after seeing the weathered yet bright smiles of my children I do not believe this statement. In one smile I have seen true happiness and innocence. In one smile I have seen the depths of a child’s heart. I truly believe a smile is the window to the heart. A smile is worth a thousand words, and the smiles of my children only speak words of love, grace, and kindness. Their smiles are like the African sunrise. The sunrise brings a whole new world to the African setting. The sun brings light and rids of darkness. In Africa, when the sun is down, the wicked come out. Every dark and evil being, spirit, or animal enters the atmosphere and corrupts the once beautiful world of Africa. But the sun rises triumphantly in the morning, stomping out iniquities, and purifying every element its rays are able to reach. The sun clears the witchcraft and horrors. The sun frees the fears of little children. It is as if the sun creates a whole new, safer universe for its people to dwell. Just as the sun brings life, so do my children’s smiles. Along with the liveliness of my children’s smiles, I think of the joy that fills my heart as I feel little, mysterious tugs on my shirt, attempting to unveil a potential period of fun and love. When I feel the fabric near the shoulder of my shirt slowly inch down due to tiny little hands tugging for my attention I cannot help but give in to their yearn for attention. I receive just as much overwhelming happiness from holding one of the children as they do when I surrender to their hunger for my undivided attention. Their tugs are like strangers knocking on door, and the moment before you discover who is pulling on your shirt is like the moment before you discover who is on your front porch. You may be opening the door to a new face or it may be a familiar face. Either way you are opening the door to a face and a conversation, and most times a cheerful encounter. Cheerful encounters are not only experienced with a little child tugging on your shirt, but every single person you come across in the country. Everybody is open and happy. They share the same genuine smile as the children explained previously, and not only do they have an amazing, inviting smile, but their personalities are also inviting. I remember being constantly surrounded by people who truly care for others more than they care for themselves. It is their priority to make sure whoever passes through is happy and well taken care of. The day I arrived people were telling me, “Welcome home,” this statement could not have been truer. I was unaware of the fact that Uganda would become a home to me. It was not the physical and feelable setting that formed my Ugandan home, but rather the hearts and open arms of the Ugandan people. They took me as their own. I only spent two weeks with them and they made it home. In fact, they made it better than home. Uganda became, what I consider, my first home. I dreaded returning to America, my now second home, after I was involved and caressed in the heart warming characters of the Ugandans…