We’re here! Our plane touched done in Kigali Airport just after dark so our first impressions of Rwanda have been by night. Initial observations – it’s so clean!! And the traffic is incredibly orderly. After my time in Asia I was expecting a similar level of craziness but apart from a slight running of a stop sign all lanes were acknowledged and no speeding was undertaken! The lovely Adele from Opportunity’s US office met us at the airport, along with Molly who is our fellow insight tripper from Chicago. I have a great feeling about this week, can’t wait to see what tomorrow brings!
Anti-malarial treatment has started! Drinking gin and tonic at the bar of hotel Serena where we are staying. It is around the corner from Hotel des Mille Collines which inspired the film Hotel Rwanda, based on the story of its manager. Charming staff; mix of French and English speaking; heavy tropical smells but not the heat and stickiness as Kigali lies at 1400m. Lovely,truly.
After a VERY early start we had a great flight and arrived in Kigali. Felt amazing taking my first steps on African soil! Lovely people – have learnt “murakoze” which means “thank you”. Seem to be using it a lot! Comfortable room – after a bit of furniture reorganization with Veronique it’s great. Really looking forward to an amazing day tomorrow. Watch this space! Xxx
Finally we are here! I’ve been looking forward to this day! An early start. Shared the flight with a Danish UN soldier who was on his way to southern Sudan & spoke warmly about Rwanda and confirmed all that I’ve heard about the smiling population & low crime rate. His stories of Libya, Iraq & Afghanistan left me grateful for my destination. We are missing 2 girls in the group but by morning we should have 7 women all raring to go! A day meeting clients in the field as well as meeting the staff at the head office of Opportunity. Another G&T & time for bed. 🙂 xxx
Just arrived at the hotel to join the group after a lovely day in Kigali with dear Belgian friends: church, market, gathering of expats on a hill with lots of interesting aid or NGO projects, fascinating discussion over dinner with Rwandan friends. I felt spoilt and very grateful.There is lots to say, lots to understand, and getting an insight with OI staff and clients will no doubt be a true experience.
Want to know more about Rwanda? Read our quick introduction here.