As a Program Assistant, I have the pleasure of visiting a few of the IMME student’s homes during the semester. This week was the week I decided to start to do home visits. On Tuesday I had the pleasure of visiting Allison’s family for tea. It was a great experience to see how she interacts with her family and to also view how comfortable she is at her home. I had a really good time there.
Allison showing off her craft to a family friend Martin Mpooya
The next day I knew I wanted to visit Olivia’s family. I went to the IMME quarter’s room and saw Olivia there. I told her I wanted to visit her family soon. She said, “Why don’t you come today. We’re having a graduation party. We are always having parties at my house.” “Sure!” I said without even thinking. I don’t know her family that well nor do I know the people whom the party is for, but I thought to myself, “Good people and good food will be there. Why not go?”
When Olivia and I arrived at her house, the loud music indicated that the party was about to start. As we were about to take our seats the MC said that family sits on one side and friends on the other side. Olivia sat on the family side and I sat on friend side. Eventually the guests of honor arrived. The two graduates walked out along with Olivia’s mama, Margaret Ssekalongo. Mama Margaret greeted every person individually. When she got to me she looked at me and then said, “You have finally come to visit. You are welcome. Come sit next to Olivia.” It felt pretty cool to know that I could sit on the family side now.
As the ceremony went on, I could not understand what was taking place since it was all in Luganda. Luckily Olivia was there to guide me through the ceremony. She even gave me tips on how to introduce myself. She said since her family has had so many parties, she’s learned the appropriate actions for the ceremonies. I spent the afternoon viewing how graduation ceremonies are done here in Uganda. I also got to eat some great food, just in case you were wondering. I had to duck out towards the middle of speeches to get back to campus at a reasonable time, but all-in-all, I had a great experience being a party crasher. That’s the thing I love about Uganda, you are always welcomed and not considered an inconvenience.
Here are some pictures below of the evening.
Mama Margaret greeting guest
One of Olivia's aunts greeting Olivia
The guests of honor
Mama Margaret giving a speech
Olivia and Mama Margaret
Olivia and her sister Angie
Post by Tiffany Gathers