More from Marks Journal.

May 15
Uganda.

Today was joyful.

Hung a netball ring, had a 2 hour meeting with a Ugandan MSF nurse who explained the whole Ugandan health system to me, and had stacks of trumpet time! These kids are practicing, and making remarkable progress, meanwhile inspiring interest in the rest.

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The plan? I have met with members of 2 local brass bands today! Unbelievable. One is a young dude Dizzy, (yes) who runs a recording studio and through that supports 10 kids. He brought along 2 band members, one of whom is hot on trumpet, which doesn't necessarily make you a good teacher. I will see how he works with the kids, and check out the band (hopefully join in!) Wednesday night. The other is a fellow called Elijah, who 20 years ago brought brass instruments into Kasese and has been teaching them ever since.

For tomorrow, we are heading into the third Ugandan Orphfund orphanage and farm. Yes, I'm taking the trumpets... one of these 2 options I will fund to teach 1-2 times a week, and maintain the gear, for a year, then return next year to see how goes it.

Back to the health system... found out enough to be Minister of Health. There is a huge gap between the idealistic and expensive teaching for the two levels of nurses, and the rather grim conditions on the ground. Public hospitals have all the extreme cases, and two nurses per 50 patients. I cried. The private clinics are expensive and weirdly less qualified. Thousands of people apply for nursing jobs. The trick is to stay healthy…

Good news? MSF (Doctors Without Borders) look after children between 10 and 19 years old for free. The trick is to stay young....

It is hard to wrap my cushy western mind around the brutal hardships these people must accept. Still amazing how many people wave with their faces lit up as they see you ride past on the back of a motorbike.

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