Friday, February 4, 2011

Second day off this week

View from outside the house
It’s Friday 4th February and believe it or not it is our second day off work this week. A three day week sounds about right to me and we are both delighted to be resting because we are very tired. The initial stages of getting used to a new culture and ways of doing things can be quite exhausting! But after a good night’s sleep we are raring to go for our day off. We’ll use today to catch up with our communication, so if you wrote and haven’t heard from us, maybe it will happen soon. Tuesday was Heroes Day (sounds fairly obvious what is being commemorated there) and today is local elections so everything seems to close down. We hope there will be no trouble. We know that the Mayors are up for election so we may have a new administration in the district and all that that means.

So far the work days have been long from 7am until 5pm which means getting up at 5-30am. We are using the time to read all the paperwork from the previous volunteer of Mary’s post, VSO documentation, Ministry documents and anything we can find to put the jigsaw together of what is going on here. We work about 15 minutes away with a very pleasant and rural walk from our home. Unfortunately, the Education Department is very tight for space and we have to share a desk at the moment but all that will change because the bulk of our time will be on the road, visiting schools, supporting, training and generally doing whatever we can to be of assistance. We are learning so much from the experience and certainly in many respects we have got a lot to learn about the importance of life’s priorities. It is an amazing experience for us so far and, just as I said in the last post, the people have been so welcoming and we have been overwhelmed by our acceptance in the community.

We are building up the social life, despite being the only VSOs in the town so it is good that we have each other. There are a few Peace Corps but we haven’t really made contact yet. On Tuesday, our nearest VSO, Camilla, who works in the Teacher Training College for Primary Teachers, came to see us. She braved a moto for the first time so the next day we decided to do the same. However, her moto ride was 50 minutes each way over rough ground and ours just 5 minutes on a flat road – the joys of being young. But we will have to build up to those dizzy heights or we won’t be able to do the job. This weekend, three short term volunteers will come to Rwamagana, Neil, Sarah and David, all in Education. On Sunday we have an invite to a party from one of the District Officers. The next weekend we will meet up with another volunteer from Gitarama on the other side of Kigali. So, at the moment, there’s lots to do. Just watch this space.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Stephen and Mary
    It's lovely to read your blog and realise that you're having similar experiences to me - the shopping is interesting isn't it!!!! I have to pluck up my confidence every time I want to buy something - except water - I can do that easily!!
    Have a lovely weekend and give my best wishes to your visitors, Tricia


Hi, hope your enjoy reading about our adventures in Rwanda. We'd love to hear from you. Stephen and Mary