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Appreciating the basics

Observer Viewpoint | Sunday, April 10, 2005

One of my fondest memories of Notre Dame is of the campus lit up on a wintry night and the reflections off the snow and the buildings around the Dome on a walk back from the Hesburgh Library at 1 a.m.

It is a memory that I treasure in these days of darkness here in Jinja, Uganda, as we wait for a blown transformer to be replaced, and knowing that after two weeks of no power, it could be a while yet before light returns.

So while Sean Ryan humorously cites in his April 7 letter to the editor that the collapse of power in Northern Indiana, Michigan and a power failure at Notre Dame lasting for the rest of the semester as one of the worst possible things to happen at Notre Dame, for some people in the developing world, this kind of experience is a common reality.

Rather than writing end of term papers with typewriters, the 29 Holy Cross candidates here in Jinja have to “hand write” their final papers and prepare for their exams by torchlight and paraffin lanterns.

It is an amazing experience to know that something as basic as electricty isn’t always available.

Rev. David Kashangaki

alumnus

Jinja, Uganda

April 9