I think that I have earned the award for worst blog poster on this year’s GROW internship however better late than never right?
These past few days have been uneventful and quiet. Some of the girls wake up and go running, but I usually enjoy some bread and jam, taking my time to start the day. Nightly, we wash off the red dust from our feet and make do with the slightly unclean feel of laundry washed by inexpert hands. All in all though, life in Rwanda is wonderful, albeit a little slow right now.
This past Sunday marked the second Maternal Health Session, the one that I personally worked on. I have to admit I was nervous for the day to be a success, but the confidence of my RVCP partners put me at ease. Though it is the dry season, it has been raining sporadically and thunderously. The tin roofs amplify even the mildest drizzle, and during the session, the downpour that the sky unleashed was deafening. To my partners’ credit though, they carried on, shouting about proper hygiene and safe food handling over the din.
The power goes out in the rain which is annoying and a little scary for me. In Rwanda, it gets DARK. On the one main street in Butare there are street lamps which glow dull and yellow however on our road, there are no such modern comforts. When it’s night, and the lights are out, it’s hard to see more than ten feet away on the road. Being a little scared of the dark, this is concerning to me, however I rarely leave the house without a flashlight, just in case.
At this point in the trip, I no longer feel like a total outsider. I also am a little bored with the near universal menu of goat kebabs and french fries with coleslaw (brochettes garnie) and the buffet offerings of stewed banana, rice, boiled potatoes, some kind of green vegetable, and fries. I do miss home a little– mainly my mother’s cooking and my bed, however I just remember how we’re on the sort of adventure that National Geographic covers regularly. Though I am a little homesick, remembering the amazing, careening bus rides through the hills, the exhilarating views from the back of a motorcycle taxi, the throngs of children who take turns holding my hand when I visit their village, and the mothers who I have come to regard as unsung heroes of Rwanda makes me want to stay here just a little longer.
Best wishes to everyone back home in the US and elsewhere!