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Reisverslag Walking with Elly – 25 February 2016
25 februari 2016
Walking with Elly – 25 February 2016
As one of my assignments regards to the fact that I have to take almost all of the walks in both camps. In the Ruboni Community Camp these walks include the village walk, the forest walk and the Mahoma trail while in The Elephant Center Campsite the walks are the village/hill walk, equator walk and the self-guided walk. So far, I have taken three of the six walks. Two of the walks will happen this weekend as I am going to spend a long weekend at The Elephant Center.
This week I have taken part in two out of the three taken walks; the village and forest walk. During both walks I had a guide called Elly. He explained a lot during both walks and has given a lot of information which is very much appreciated.
On Monday I took part in the village walk which leads visitors along different houses within the community such as the women’s group of weavers, the witchdoctor, a farming demonstration, a story teller and a blacksmith.
The most interesting to me was the story teller as he was able to explain a lot about the culture and the old/new tradition of the local population (also called the Bakonzo). For example, originally the Bakonzo migrated every time someone died, since they used to believe that death surrounding a place results into bad luck. This migration finally stopped in this area called the Rwenzori Mountains as they met western missionaries telling them ‘’Death will always surround you. Eventually, you will continue to move and the land you left will not be yours and the land you want to reach may never be yours – therefore you become homeless’’.
Another interesting moment happened at the women’s group of weavers, since a very old lady had been waiting for a visitor for a while. As I approached the group of women the old lady started singing and dancing as a young child. It was heart-warming to experience such love.
Although, some of the village walk had not been arranged very well, it was a lovely time and I took some wonderful pictures.
On Wednesday, I took part in the forest walk. Guide Elly and I started walking at 08.30 downhill from the camp. As I usually cross a bridge to continue to the village, we turned to the left and found a red bridge to cross the big river. On the other side of the water we turned left, basically walking back on the other side of the river. We walked along farms, through an open forest and had an amazing view of the camp, the river and surroundings. As we finally reached the thick forest, here the forest part of the forest walk would start. The path of the walk was sometimes hard to see or even gone since a landslide occurred, some of the parts were very dirty and wet. We walked up and down, crossed small rivers, and saw a lot of plants, butterflies, a few bats till we reached the boarder of the National Park. This boarder is clearly marked with Eucalyptus trees. Here, walked along the boarder for a while before returning out of the thick forest, we saw a small monkey jumping from the forest into the National Park. As the animals of the national park do not know there is a boarder, sometime they may cross from one side to another. As we left the forest we reached a different point then were we started, as we walked downhill we eventually reached the point we entered the forest, to continue our walk downhill and returning towards the village. From here, I thanked my guide as he firstly explained the vote system. Then I walked to the office before returning to the camp.
During the forest walk we saw a three-horned chameleon. One of the three types found in this area. Here I learned that if a chameleon is (accidently) killed the Bakonzo belief their families will receive bad luck. The first new born in the family should be called Chameleon to stop the bad luck from influencing their family.
As can be seen I learned much more about the Bakonzo during these walk. Especially, since the guide was able to explain a lot.
Wasinga, (Thank you,)
Foto's bij verslag (1)
25 februari 2016 16:30 | Door: peter
26 februari 2016 14:07 | Door: Corien
Your amazing stories are so interesting. It's for me a totally unkown world.
And I'm wondering how many people have the name Chameleon!
Warm regards, Corien
1 maart 2016 15:32 | Door: Joëlle
So far I have met two boys in the village with this name. Although I expect there are more.