The same city?

Looking out on the green, the neat houses and well kept yards between my hotel and Lake Victoria it seems this morning like I have stepped into a different world. There are birds in the trees and flowers on the bushes. There is haze over the city which the lovely woman at reception this morning says is fog and will clear as the sun comes out.

I can sit on the terrace and look at the islands quite close to shore all dense green and hilly. From the map, most of the city is behind me, up the hill, around the corners but certainly not in line of sight at the moment.

Cassia Lodge is a locally owned and managed hotel. It is comfortable but not shiny. I have a fan, mosquito curtains and a terrace on which I can sit and work. just enough out of the sun as to not bake myself. I have socks drying for the moment in the sun. There are loungers with large shade umbrellas next to the pool. The staff is African, the guests by and large are not.

The most fun of the day was watching swimming lessons. The hotel has an agreement with the International (English Speaking) School that is within walking distance. Once to twice a week the pool fills with grade after grade of youngsters grinning as they cool off in the pool and at least make an effort to listen to instruction. There is more or less a uniform of blue or red shirt and sorts which is quickly shed to reveal a variety of swimming suits.

One guest who had been doing the classic British bake in a poolside lounger seemed to be a bit irritated but finally understood “part of the community…..” which I suspect would not happen with a chain hotel, less accommodating guests and concerns of liability.

Its time to pull the mosquito netting and dowse the lights.

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