FRM News

The Easthams: Laundry Day

| FRM News

We just got our clothes washer installed, and we were ecstatic to do our first load of laundry.  I had also just installed our clothes line outside.  We were thankful that the clothes were completely dried after only two hours.  I folded the clothes and put them in the clothes dresser.  Then I realized my mistake.

Most everything I do in Uganda is at least a little different than how I would do things in US.  Failure to do things the “African way” can have very bad consequences.

My mistake was failing to iron the clothes, even the underwear, before putting them away.  Why?  Ugandans call it the “mango fly”  although it’s more properly called Tumbu Fly.  Suffice it to say that this fly lays its eggs in wet clothes as they’re drying outside.  Days later, the eggs hatch, and the fly larvae do something nasty to your skin.  I’ll spare you the details.  For those with a stronger stomach, you can read about the Tumbu Fly on Wikipedia or this medical journal case report.

This is just one African activity of daily living that we are adjusting to.  In a few days I’ll tell you about something else that’s causing me to get pulled over by the traffic police.

John Eastham

New Missionary to Uganda