The Blog

Beggars everywhere

Wed, 2010-07-07

There are two words in Rwanda which the locals always recognise: amafaranga pfite. It means, loosely, there is no money. This is a sentiment that many Rwandan's associate with and one of the saddest challenges we have faced out there is dealing with the begging that comes from almost every direction.

Standing room only

Tue, 2010-06-29

Rose Street Towers is proving to be a splendid summer residence for us. We have a view of Edinburgh castle from our bedroom window, an old fashioned range in the kitchen and a fireplace to give a nice homely feel.

A small problem of language

Tue, 2010-06-29

Rwanda has traditionally been a Francophone country. After the 1994 genocide, Franco-Rwandan relations deteriorated and Rwanda has made an effort over the years to align itself with the Anglophone East Africa area. As part of this identity change, the country's official language has been changed from French to English.

Culture shock

Sat, 2010-06-26

We have been taking a short rest from the blog while we get used to our new surroundings and throw off the various bugs and infections that seem to have traveled with us from Rwanda. Now that we are more accustomed to the bracing east wind we are starting to find our feet. And our feet have taken us into the depths of Leith where we have had occasion to wander.

Warming up - slowly

Thu, 2010-06-10

Feeling is gradually returning to our fingers and toes after the shock of swapping Rwanda’s sun for the blazing heat of a Scottish summer. Those fleeces we packed away last year have been dug out of their bags and put to good use.

A sad day

Sat, 2010-05-22

We have just spent the day in Remera Rukoma, twenty miles west of Kigali, at a genocide memorial service of the Eglise Presbyterienne. This is the anniversary of when, in 1994, the Hutu Interahamwe surrounded a school run by the church and killed the pastors that had been hiding there.

Mrs R takes a tumble

Wed, 2010-05-19

There is a children’s game that most mothers will recognise which goes “Head, shoulders, knees and toes …”. Well, Mrs. R was playing games with the children at Kinamba and took lumps out of most of that list yesterday when she fell whilst being chased around the playground.

Bags for the boys

Sat, 2010-05-15

We are starting to get used to the different styles of shop here in Kigali and have learnt not to take the first price that is offered for anything. Two of our boys at Nyamirambo had come top of their class at school so we were asked if we could give them a small reward as an encouragement to the others.