I got to Kololo Independence grounds at about 2.30pm.
Before I settled in, I decided to stroll around to find that spot where the view was impeccable!
A couple of minutes into my sunny stroll…in came the wildest cheers and excitement from the Ugandan Crowd ever since I had gotten to the grounds. Flags were flying high, drums resounding and the crowd was ecstatic! Ugandans were relay racing on small scale from one viewpoint to the other. Perhaps to catch up with our Jacob Kiplimo.
The now first ever Golden athlete from Uganda!
The Kenyan fans who were in high spirits had all of sudden calmed down. It then dawned on me. Ugandans were winning. I jumped up, joined in the dance and morale boosting as Jacob raced his way to Golden History!
I was a witness to one of the best things to have happened in Ugandan History. 1AAF 2017 will forever linger in my mind! Thanks to our new found athletics hero, 16 year old Jacob Kiplimo!
Never before had I attended an athletics event except for the compulsory interclass competitions back at school. I was in fact never intrigued by Cross Country. I only attended because once we tip-toed to the main trading centre, we branched off for some muchomo as we waited for the ‘real’ athletes to run back & joined the race to school acting so worn-out!
But this was definitely no ordinary athletics event. Even our very own, the Big man- His Excellency, Y.K Museveni was present. This event so many in one;
World Championships – It’s not every day that Kampala/Uganda OR any other country for that matter gets an opportunity to host such a globally acclaimed event. So, yes, of course, we were the chosen City, it was a HUGE deal!
A Talent exhibition – This was a classic show of Africa has got talent. Uganda too! We got the first ever Gold Medal and were ranked 3rd worldwide. That’s no easy task! We only need to pull up our socks. Congrats to our Ugandan Team.
A Tourism opportunity- Kampala/Uganda got to showcase their beauty to these prospective tourists.
Ohh, lest I forget- the view of Kampala from Kololo was simply breath-taking! It was the perfect blend of greenery, nature, modern structures and serenity. Kampala is indeed a wonderful City! Little wonder, this cross country was dubbed ‘the green cross country.’
Even as I write now, some teams are still enjoying the Ugandan people, wildlife, lifestyle and cuisine! I must say the Ugandans used social media quite effectively telling the athletes what to try, where to go, what to eat etcetera.
Family day Out – Friends and families had fun. As a matter of fact, I made one and met so many old ones. It was a day well spent.
Business opportunity – Ugandans can be very lucrative people. If you had never envisioned Kololo as a market place, I did. Business was booming. Of course, there’s no such event in Kampala without sizzling hot, tasty sticks of muchomo, roasted plantain, rolex, and soft drinks. Those were in plenty. Plus of course, the African accessories and apparel for the tourists to carry home, souvenirs & the locals to have beautiful pieces.
About how we performed…
Generally speaking, as much as we, the Ugandans very much wanted Uganda to win more gold medals, we also know that we deserved what we got. The entire time, I kept wondering what the Kenyans fed on or did to make them scoop almost all the gold medals and money. I have never payed keen attention to the Kenyan anthem but the award ceremony taught me that anthem. I think I only need the lyrics now because the instrumental is still buzzing in my head.
Anyway, like famous online Marketer & Blogger, Neil Patel says, Winning gives happiness….
Oh yes, you should have seen the Ugandan crowd celebrate like no man’s business when Jacob Kiplimo won Uganda’s first ever gold medal! If you ever want morale boosters, come to Kampala. Ugandans are by far the best morale boosters that ever lived!
However, Neil Patel also says, Losing gives one wisdom…
One thing we are cock sure of is that we have learnt our lessons. Cheptegai has, Uganda has. Overall though, we did a good job and are proud! The world should brace themselves for Kampala next time. This was just the beginning!
Otherwise, Salute to our Kenyan and Ethiopian Counterparts! Your performances outshone the rest.
And just maybe the Ugandans shouldn’t feel so bad, after all, EAC won…right?
We are one!
See all results on the link below