Well hello there!
Ca va? Guess who is now living in Kigali, Rwanda?? That’s right, me. God keeps smiling on me, I don’t know why, but I’ll take it. And that’s jsut what I’m doing in my new city, trying to take it all in. I thought about keeping a seperate blog for this portion of my life. I thought the other stuff I wrote here might be too personal and random for people who acutally come on to read about Rwanda. So I might do that (make anew blog) at a later date, or I may not. We’ll see what happens over the next few days.
The important thing is that I begin to document this incredible experience. Today is day 8. I’ve been here for approximately one week , 3 hours and 40 minutes. So, where do I begin? Because really, where is the beginning? I guess the beginning was when Coady put up their positings for internships and my friend A. emailed me saying “Did you see this??????” or maybe it was after I graduated and was trying to figure out what to do next. Wherever it began, here I now am, working at AJPRODHO in Kigali, Rwanda.
So far, it’s excellent. The days are hot but not as hot as they are in Ghana (thank goodness) so it’s quite comfortable. I live in a nice room in a sweet guesthouse not far from where I work. My room is great. I have a nice foamy double bed complete with a mosquito net ( which I sometimes think of as the princess canopy I’d always wanted as a child). I have a tv, fridge, full bathroom with (drumroll) hot water!! Yes, very happy. I know I’m not as hardcore as I’d like to be, I enjoy my hot water. I try not to use too much though.
The family who works at the guesthouse is very kind as well. I think I will soon be adopting the two brothers work there as my own. Or rather, they just might adopt me. They’ve been every so helpful so far from taking me to the internet cafe, to going for walks with me, to giving me my first (well second but much more impressinalbe) taste of goat brochette.
Mmmm brochettee…. I can still taste it. That was last night and I have to say, it’s the food that has pleased my palette the most so far. I’m still trying to figure out what I like to eat here though it’s all pretty decent. One thing that’s cool is that lunchtime is buffet time. That’s right, buffets everyday! It’s neat because I get to try many foods at the same time. I don’t know what everything is called but it’s mostly food people would recognize in Canada, just in different combination. For example, a lot of people (everyone?) eats fries. They are served everyday at the place I eat for lunch and at my guesthouse. Also, they have plantain here but they call it banana vert (green). It is boiled and cooked in a type of peanut stew. It’s not bad but it doesn’t touch our peanut soup;). So I think my experience with food will be a bit of a … a courtshp if you will. We need to get to know each other a little better and I may grow to love it.
Work is good so far. I walk to work every morning and exchange greetings with usually two or three of the men who work here. There is one other woman who works here for sure and she’s actually a temp, like me. She’s been here for about 3 weeks and and has a month and a week to go if I remember correctly. She’s also a Canadian. An Indian Canadian. She was telling me that the driver who picked me up F. was telling her how surprised he was that I’m black. He was like “but how can it be? How can she be black and Canadian and Ghanaian?”. He asked me about it himself on one of our excursions into town and I think he has started to understand the beautiful anomaly that is the identity of myself and many other Canadians. For the last few days, I’ve been reading over and making revisions to the strategic plan. I’m not sure how much I can or should talk about work on here so I’ll keep it pretty general. It’s not top secret information or anything but.. I’ll refrain from talking too much about it until I’m more immersed and have a better grasp of what’s going on. I can say that I’ll be working on the Governance Program. I’ll be helping to edit articles written by students for a newsletter, and helping organize youth debate teams. That should be exciting. (The Great Debaters anyone?)
Well, that’s enough parentheses in one blog my friends. Thank you for all your support, excitement for, and encouragement in my coming here. I’ve brought it all with me and it is contributing to the contentment I feel so far in being here.