Friday, 15 May 2015

Strange Days

Having an extreme bout of I Love Rwanda. Just been for a walk around my neighbourhood in the dark to get odds and ends. It's 8pm and 23c. Relaxing on my porch with a cold beer, listening to the bugs chirping. I really do live in a wonderful country. I feel so safe here, and it's brought home all the more by the current footage coming out of Burundi, our southern neighbour.

Unrest turned into an attempted coup, with Nkurunziza locked out of his own country and all the borders now closed.

Last night, my friend LB (of Goma) came over for a strategy workshop, then Jo picked us up and we went to Ogopogo with the Burundian Country Director of Spark, who is really nice. 

I am the contact fairy, I was introducing LB to some people I thought might be useful for his projects, so my friend Vy joined us (he's an actor who starred in We Are All Rwandans, now a clay therapist and filmmaker), also Christiane's eco toilet engineer from Kibuye and my friend Lucky who lives in Bujumbura. He came to Kigali for training and, true to his namesake, managed to get the last bus out before the borders closed! He's not sure when he'll be able to go home. He informed us that the coup had failed. 

It's funny. Burundi is only a few hours bus ride away but we're all waiting around for any scrap of information. It's particularly odd for me, as I have these international delegates flying in next month. I'm responsible for their safety, so I've got my ears pinned back. Kagame told Nkurunziza to step down, Nkurunziza accused Kagame of political espionage. Then the attempted coup. Was a serious relief to read that Gen. Godefroid Niyombare was not the kind of man Rwandan politicians would have backed, otherwise all hell might have broken loose and made Rwanda a direct target. 

Still, a failed coup is likely to lead to reprisals. 

We're all waiting to see where this is going.

Jo and co. headed home, but LB, Vy, Lucky and myself stayed up until midnight drinking and chatting. It was a totally mad conversation. Haven't had a good night out in a long time. I've had a really bad cold lately and was only just feeling capable.

At my Monday office with a rather charming cup of LemSip.

Vy gave Lucky a lift home, and LB and I decided to walk down the hill to find a moto. That man's like a boomerang, I really wasn't expecting him back so soon, but I'm glad he is. He's determined to create a job for me, and maybe I'll still be interested in development when he does. He's staying until next month, renting a place up in Gisenyi so he can cross the border more easily. He suggested I go with him to Goma, and I'd love to, but I really can't. Work is jam packed at the moment.

Still, we've been doing quite a bit. I introduced him to the head of Legal Aid this morning, and we went for melange at Karibu after. I now fully comprehend African time, as explained to me by someone who is both African and British and can function in both mindsets. I've learnt a lot the past couple of days. Will be sad to see him go again. 

In avocado news, I never want to see guacamole again in my life. I keep giving avocados away, and every morning there are more! My friend has suggested leaving out the chili and onions and using it as a face mask.

In bug news, I had the largest millipede I've ever had in my house, and I have a new baby gecko.

In best news ever: I'M GETTING A HOT SHOWER!

I mean it this time. It's really gonna happen - 3pm tomorrow! My landlord is coming to fit it personally. If anyone needs me for the next three days, I'll be in the bathroom singing into a hairbrush.

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