Trip Start Feb 13, 2009
19Trip End Dec 17, 2009
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Nothing wakes you up like a group of 43 five year olds screaming at you in Kinyarwandan in the morning, but that is what I am greeted with every weekday morning. I spend the morning’s helping out in the nursery and then when that is finally over (it’s not that bad, it’s worth it as it helps the orphanage and we are slowly making headway with the kids) we go to our local shack and grab a cakey (sweet bread) and chapatti, and sneak as much of our own fruit into our mouth’s as possible with out the scary lady who owns it catching us. She’s nice really, maybe it’s just pms. In the afternoon we spend our time playing or helping the kids in the orphanage, who range in age from 2 to 22. By far the best time, except that due to my name, I have acquired the nickname pussy, which just isn’t as funny over here. We spend most of our time brainstorming for future projects (today and yesterday we made Jewish cookies) or just chilling playing cards in the sun.
It is now the rainy season here which is fully in swing. Last Friday as we were walking back from Gisimba (the orphanage) which is on the other side of town and two buses away (which are hilarious, and where we meet the best and creepiest people) we got caught in a rain storm which quickly turned into a hurricane (not really) with needle like raindrops. Annie and I got caught in the rain whilst trying to get into our rain jackets. Once we had managed to dress ourselves and dash under the petrol station canopy, to the great amusement of the locals (wet muzungo’s are even funny than us in the dry state) we stood by as we watched trees snap and roofs flip. Eventually the sun came out (15 minutes later) and we made our way home to the sound of more laughter from the locals. Oh I almost Clive Owen last week when he made a visit to the orphanage, I played it super cool.
Saturday we spent exploring Kigali and Kimironko, which is the area in which we live. On our way back from the market we caught in yet another rainstorm. As we were walking back we got laughed at by a truckload of prisoners in there orange jumpsuits. One of the most humiliating experiences ever. I will explain more. Prisoners can be hired to do community service, either by the state or by private companies. They also colour code the jumpsuits of the prisoners. Orange for prisoners tried, and pink for those who are awaiting trial.
Things have been a little tense around due to the French president visiting for the first time in 2( years but all seems to of settled down now. Was interesting to see how people reacted to the visit, and from what I could gather there were mixed emotions.
On Sunday we headed up to Akagera National Park to go on Safari for the day. We left our house at 5am and got to the park by 7.30. It was the hottest day so far, guessing at 32c. We spent the day out in the sun driving around looking at the baboons, giraffe and hippopotamus amongst other curious animals. Had an awesome day, lovely to get out of Kigali for one day. Although upon our arrival back home we realised how rosy pink we had gotten, which is when I became a very good friend to my dear after sun. This weekend coming we are off to Butare to visit the National Museum, National University of Rwanda amongst other exciting adventures. For now through I am off, I will keep you posted. Here are a few interesting facts and photos to feed your apetite.
Some interesting facts about Rwanda:
1. People drive on whichever side of the road they fancy, although I think technically it’s the right hand side.
2. Everyone wants to be your 'sister’.
3. If you ever want to get off a taxi, hit the roof.
4. EVERYTHING you do is funny because your white