Last day in Rwanda

Trip Start Apr 02, 2014
Trip End May 07, 2014

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Where I stayed
Hotel Chez Lando Kigali
Read my review - 4/5 stars

Flag of Rwanda  , Kigali,
Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Today Mr. Mundeli was to come to the hotel about 10:30 to go over our accounting for the trip and for local needs. A call came to my room about that time but was cut off; I assumed that was him trying to let us know he'd be late. I worked all morning; at noon Daniel and I walked down to Sol e Luna for lunch. They had a nice buffet for a good price, and they have a lovely plunging view on the hills and valleys of Kigali.

Shortly after we returned a young adult who has grown up in the church came by to talk about baptism. At the same time Mr. Mundeli arrived. He had been delayed by the late arrival of a repairman for their electrical system at home. It had been knocked out by a lightning strike more than a month ago and they haven’t had power since. He had asked several times for a repairman to come but the utility authority had not been willing to send one. "You can’t count on government departments and workers" he lamented. I told him that in my experience it was the same everywhere!

I asked the young man to wait while we went over the accounting for our trip: taxis for members to travel to and from our services, hall rental for Passover and so on, and I was happy to be also be able to give some member assistance. Some money to help replace the roof of a church member whose husband had abandoned the family, some scholarship assistance for students, and other help for needy members. Just about everyone here qualifies for that status.

We thanked Mr. Mundeli for his faithful service and said “au revoir” (until we see each other again – one of the few times French is more concise than English!).

Then we had a long talk about baptism with the young man. It was a very good beginning, and it was encouraging to see how seriously he took the subject and the commitment it involved. After an hour I gave him the titles of some church literature to study and a list of scriptures as well, and told him we could talk again when I came back in July.

We worked for the rest of the afternoon and then Daniel and I went to the Hotel des Mille Collines for dinner. This is the hotel featured in the film Hotel Rwanda, where a conscientious and enterprising hotel manager managed to prevent the genocidal killings from entering the hotel. Many Tutsis had their lives saved in this hotel. It was also the only one in Kigali that was not sacked during the violence. I’ve written before that when I first started coming to Rwanda, this was the only hotel able to receive clients. The windows were still covered with stickers from the world’s major news stations whose journalists had stayed here while covering the aftermath of the catastrophe.

The hotel had been remodeled since and it is now the second nicest hotel in Kigali, after the Serena. Rumor has it that a Hilton will be opening its doors in the near future. The Panorama restaurant in Kigali has a wonderful plunging view of the city, and the food is good and well- priced for such a place, although the staff is not as well trained as one would expect.  We enjoyed our last dinner in Rwanda for this trip, then headed back to Chez Lando for what we hope will be a good night’s sleep before we head to Burundi tomorrow.
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mary on

How encouraging to read of all that you and Daniel have taken care of in Rwanda this trip and that you take with you the hope of a baptism in July.

Tess Washington on

Glad to read about the help that almost everyone received from you on this trip! Glad to read about the young man's interest in baptism and the assistance and guidance that you've given him before taking it. Thank you Mr. Meeker and Mr. Harper for all your work!

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