I really didn’t believe my friend when she told me that the best chicken in the world can be bought on the side of the highway between Kampala and Jinja. She claimed that it not only tasted the best, but it was a fun experience as well. If you have ever travelled the highway I am talking about through Mabira Forest, you know exactly what I am talking about.
All you need to do is pull your vehicle over to the side of the road and you will very quickly be surrounded by people dressed in blue aprons with numbers on them. They will be carrying a variety of items from water, fanta, soda, ngonga (roasted banana wrapped in newspaper), meat on a stick, bananas and the famous chicken on a stick.
The best part about this experience is watching the vendors. They will surround a matatu or vehicle but if they don’t make a sale in the first few minutes, they will leave. But if another vehicle pulls up, they will dash to that one hoping to be at the window of a person hoping to buy their product. The best is when a bus pulls up. I don’t think I have ever seen people drop what they are doing to chase down customers on a bus as fast as “the blue apron” people. They can barely reach the windows to sell their product, but they manage as best as they can.
Now as I said, the chicken on a stick is the best in the world. Why? you ask. Well, it’s salty, perfectly roasted and a little crispy. But eating it in the back of a matatu when you are sweaty and squished is the best part. The windows are down, as you barrel down the highway, and every single bite makes the dangerous drive on this highway way more worth it. For me, I know that if I end up in a head on collision with another vehicle because my taxi driver was passing a sugar cane truck and another matatu side by side, I will have had the best meal ever as my last.