I stood in front of the crowd in the packed auditorium in lady clothes, but what I was presenting I was damn serious about … It was 20 February 2001, 19 days after I came up with the window concept, about a week since I shared it with my classmates at the Institute of Ethics and Development — and I felt I was ready to present it to the world!
As a whitey, the only full-time non-African student at Uganda Martyrs University, I was routinely called Mzungu (white person). But a real Mzungu was expected to come with some form of colonial guilt that I simply didn’t feel. My country of birth, Slovenia, was historically not a coloniser but one of the colonised. So I used the opportunity to rebrand myself the Slozungu.
My one-man Slozungu Show was a mixture of many things, including theatre (that is why the Institute head Deirdre Carabine lent me her dress) but the real point was to get people interested in Edirisa. I think I did it reasonably well — 20 years on the organisation still exists!
It has been built by hundreds of people, and my way to express gratitude to them all was to create the Story in Narrated Slides, a video meant to appreciate and update everyone at the time of our anniversary. But then a different (I hope better) idea popped up: why not integrate the gist of the presentation into the Weekly Companion?!
The second edition of the show therefore doesn’t only speak to our members but to all of those who have helped us reach this point… Because Gorilla Highlands may well be Edirisa at its best!