Skinny dipping in the River Nile

Memories of this liberating experience came last week after reading a report about Ugandan men who were reportedly complaining about the size of condoms. Apparently condoms are too small for them.

The story, which quoted the MP, made world headlines and Tweeter went crazy too. One tweet asked “How endowed are Ugandan men?” This reminded me of my Ugandan tour at beginning of this year. I remembered the day I skinny dipped in the River Nile at Bujagali Falls near Jinja. This is still the most liberating thing I have ever done this year.

Children bathing in the River Nile at Bujagali near Jinja, Uganda

Children bathing in the River Nile at Bujagali near Jinja, Uganda

I walked inside Bujagali Falls park. There is entry fee so I pretended I was just a regular khat chewing local guy like those I found at the gate. A guard with an old rifle stopped me about 50m inside the gate and demanded payment. Mxm, I didn’t totally cut it as local, there must have been some ‘new guy’ in my pose. I didn’t protest though, I walked back to the guard and confidently gave him 2,000 Ugandan shillings ($1), an entry fee for the locals. He gave me a receipt and I proceeded inside. This is one of the few benefits of touring Africa if you’re black. No Mzungu price for a black man.

The River Nile at Bujagali Falls, the waterfalls have died

The River Nile at Bujagali Falls, the waterfalls have died

Inside. I met guys by the riverside trying to sell me a boat ride. But I was not really interested. I have done many of those. Then I saw some guys swimming at some rocky river bank. They were skinny dipping. And I immediately wanted to join them. When I approached them, they seemed to be little uneasy because I was holding a camera. I then packed it inside the bag and started slowly undressing.

They were boys, they looked quite young, possibly mid teens. For a while they covered their groin area when they got off the water. But after a while, they got used to me and began to be free to swim without worrying about exposing their packages to this stranger.

The tallest guy was the first to freely hang it. I must add, ‘proudly’ hang it. Ok, get me right, the River Nile water was cold and this boy was like he just woke up from a warm bed in the middle of a wet dream. I wondered what will his future look like. Actually I think the Ugandan MP is speaking for that guy. Then the other small boys followed. Hanging them. Proudly. They were gifted young men. Athletic ribbed dark skinned. These boys were not really good for my ego. So I never dropped the pants because I was thinking I couldn’t come all the way from Botswana to Uganda for this embarrassment.

My little friends from Bujagali

My little friends from Bujagali

So I went further by the riverbank where the kids were skinny dipping in shallow waters. But the kids were quite small and I decided against joining them for fear of being viewed as some kind of child predator preying on these little happy skinny dipping kids. I then returned back to the ‘big’ boys’ section. I kept reassuring myself saying, they don’t know me anyway. I’m not dating their sisters. I’m a tourist.

Water fun in the River Nile

Water fun in the River Nile

I took off all my clothes and ran into the water. The ‘big’ boys cheered and laughed. I was cleansing in the waters that has just began a 6,853km journey to the Mediterranean. I focused my mind on this thought and forgot about the “men sizes” of these ‘gifted’ boys.

Quite liberating, if catch my drift.

Natives Bonfire Sessions

A jam session at Block 9, Gaborone featuring Tomeletso Sereetsi, Tshireletso Motlogelwa, Conscious Reggae Band, Chantty Natural, Kabo Leburu, Kayzee, Tshipa and others. It was a night of poetry, music and drinks.

I miss the beach

From Jacobsen Beach in Kigoma on Lake Tanganyika, where I washed off the exhaustion of three days of sailing through the lake onboard MV Liemba to the white sandy beaches of Cape Town with those rich bastards that sunbath and drives off in Ferraris to have cup of hybrid coffee at the Camps Bay beachfront in Cape Town. I miss the beach.

I miss the sounds of the swaying waves together with the palm trees along the Indian Ocean. That salty and sand-on-body feeling. The Indian Ocean beaches. In Mombasa where the beach is a market place pulling crowds, camels, bicycles, cattle, or in Mikadi Beach in Dar where they swim with black tubes and full dresses. Or Durban beach with its happy folks that dances and runs for fun. Those beautiful lonely beaches along the Eastern Cape.

Tofo Beach in Mozambique, I have never drunk so much beer on a beach, 2M, I woke up in front of my tent. Or Nungwi Beach in Zanzibar with its crispy clear water, where tourists are advised to dress-up when they leave the beach because their beachwear is rather too hot for the locals.

I miss the beach. Aero Beach on lake Victoria in Entebbe, Uganda with its old airplanes and pelicans. Or Lake of Stars beaches in Malawi babe, Cape Maclear where the beach hosts locals doing their laundry and tourists hanging with that dreadlocked guy called Sweetman promising them the finest weed in the entire Lakeside.

I miss the beach.

My favourite Top5 beer commercials [videos]

#5 Castle Lager – New York (Toto – Africa)

Maybe it was the music, Toto – Africa, or New York. Maybe it was the braai and boerwors hissing as the fat met fire on the braai stand because i was not drinking when this commercial came out but i loved it. This ad came during the glorious new South Africa period when the rainbow nation was being born. It still evokes good memories.

#4 Guinness – Sapeurs

This ad makes me want to visit Congo, meet the Sapeurs and have Guinness with them. I love the ad

#3 Heineken – Walk in fridge

A funny but telling advert about them boys and their drink. This is a brilliant concept.

#2 Carlsberg – put friend to the test

This is another one of my favourite commercial and well executed. I don’t know what I could have done if I was put in a situation but I’m very proud of friends that passed the test.

#1  Castle Lager – RWT

This is still my all-time faourite tv commercial. A round the world trip done in a 58seconds of drinking heavy beers, sleeping in dodgy hotels and meeting really great people. I love it and I always wished to do the same, a trip around the world.

Bonus ; Heineken – Walk in fridge

Here is some bonus laughter, a different perspective on the “walk in fridge”

My Overview Effect

This is my favourite picture from the Gaborone 2014 Africa Youth Games opening ceremony.

Earth image at the Gaborone2014 AfricaYouthGames

Earth image at the Gaborone 2014 Africa Youth Games

It was like photographing a wish, a dream. I have always wished to see earth in person. Do you know those pictures from space showing the round marble ball hanging on emptiness? Apparently we exist on to that ball. This has always intrigued me.

So this picture aroused my yearning for space travel. I have read accounts of those fortunate people that had the rare opportunity to see earth. They say viewing earth from outside is a perspective-altering experience.

In a documentary called Overview astronaut Ron Garam said: “When we look down on the Earth from space, we see this indescribably beautiful planet. It looks like a living, breathing organism. But it also at the same time looks extremely fragile.”