Tuesday, 18 October 2016

Party Girls

Teaching Friends to Make Origami Flapping Birds

As ever, it's been a while since my last update, so lots has been happening. I'll try and get through most of it today.

A couple of weekends back, I had a mammoth night out with the girls. Not a very auspicious start, as I didn't have any water and had to get glammed up using a bucket. Haven't done that in a while.

Because who needs a hot shower when you have a bucket...?
We started out by visiting Kigali's grand new Marriott Hotel. It is absolutely huge. It only opened a couple of days before.

It is so large that it has the unfortunate feel of an airport, and the service was shocking. Lots of people outside but not a waiter in sight. Had to get up and go in search of them. Then twenty-five minutes for cocktails to arrive. But they were nice when they came


Then we headed to another new hotel, Ubumwe. They have a rooftop pool looking out across the entire city, but only guests can use it. Still, a spectacular sight.


We eventually ended up at Papyrus for shisha and gin.

This is me and the lovely Maia, who I'll say more about below. But by two o'clock in the morning Maia, Cindy (above with the shisha pipe) and myself were the only ones left from our original party. We were joined by our friend Lan and headed downstairs to Cindy's club, Envy.

Goodnight Papyrus, It's Time To Party
Way too much gin ensued...

And some really dodgy dancing on chairs...

Until, at five-thirty in the morning, we called it a night and I headed back to Maia's. We pulled an old mattress out onto the lawn and lay there watching the sun rise until we fell asleep.

Sunrise From The Taxi
Sunrise From The Garden

It took me three days to recover from that hangover, but it was totally worth it.

In more decorous happenings, I've finally started a proper Kinyarwanda course. Two nights a week at my friend Katie's café, Inzora. Katie and her friend developed the course after working as English teachers for a long time. They wanted people to be able to learn Kinya the same way people learn English, in an interactive TEFL sort of way. It works really well, and I joined up with my friend Agnés. It's a great group. Intensive but fun. And fabulous coffee.

Sadly the mighty healing papaya finally fell, despite my landlord's valiant efforts to save it with metal crutches. Very upsetting to see it go, especially after all it did for me. Blast you, termites!

In other teaching news, I now deliver a course in fiction writing once a week at Maia's new café and evening school, Casa Keza. Website's not up yet and café not open yet, but it's been a real honour taking the first ever class there. Opening night was baptised by a massive tropical storm. Water came pouring in thorough the closed windows and we had a spectacular backdrop of dramatic lightning. Despite that, everyone made it. I have eight students. Good mix of Rwandan and expat (and one Burundian refugee). Looking to run a second fiction course and also a course in web design. So between that and the Kinya classes, my weeks are pretty busy now.

Entrance Floor of Casa Keza

It's a lovely venue. Maia's inviting a few of us to be taste testers for the new menu, and her signature sangria. Happy times ahead.

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