Mindfulness Case Study – The Author in Uganda

Time in Uganda was a life-changing experience

In 2005 I found myself in Uganda.  I found myself halfway around the world in a culture without electricity or mains water or money. Of course this meant no mobile devices, no bright lights, no cookers or ovens, no TV, no cars, no litter bins… and it goes on and on.

What was a little Western princess like me doing here in Uganda? It was a combination of circumstances, including

  • another teacher was speaking in the staff room about a scheme which involved UK teachers training to become Global teacher for 5 weeks in selected African countries.
  • I was needing to do something special in my declining years and my children had left home

It would be good for our school to have a partnership with a foreign school for topics like Global Citizenship and Children’s rights, etc.

As the diary below shows, Mindfulness actually happened to me. We had been well-trained to expect the huge difference between our cultures, I was astounded by the lifestyle in Kitwetwe village!

My brain was working overtime as I noticed everything in every moment. I was an honorary man. Boys had bow, girls to kneel to me.I was treated like an exotic pet by my family.

I sometimes said aloud, ‘This is really happening to me!’ when the villagers and I marched out to plant an avocado tree in my honour.

When my host, Kasangaki Johnson, came over to the UK. It was all in reverse. I was embarrassed to show the washing machine and tumble dryer, the bathtub that ran hot water…

I recognised, when I started learning about Mindfulness, that I had understood about living in the moment from my Uganda weeks.

See what you think as you read my journal:

                                               Diary with pics