Back to Kigali


We had been in Kampala a few weeks ago and tried to book seats for moving back to Rwanda this week. But no, they only took bookings for the next day, so we would have to phone them the day before we wanted to travel. So we did. "But how are you going to pay?" asked the voice at the other end. "You have to come to Kampala to book seats." With Kampala a day's travel away in the wrong direction, any semblance of control flew out the window. A few terse words later and the voice at the other end felt persuaded to give us seats twenty and twenty-one. But no, the bus wasn't the next day. That one was full. Our only choice was the bus passing Masaka at midnight. It had taken until mid-morning to get through to the bus company.

So instead of the rest of the day to clear our midden into two well-travelled rucksacks, we had the luxury of all morning to get ourselves packed and out of the house. Fortunately our worldly possessions don't take much packing these days and we managed to get ourselves into Kiwangala shortly after lunch. Finding a taxi for Masaka is always a bit of a hit and miss affair. If there aren't enough people wanting to travel then the driver just sits and waits. Fortunately, we found one who must have had some pressing engagement and we were in town within the hour.

Which was just in time for the day's downpour. This past week the rains have become regular and heavy. After a mug of African tea (hot milk, tea bag and ginger - try it) we found shelter in the bus station. There aren't many buses stop there which is probably just as well for the goats and hens that were doing the same as us.

Once the storm had passed we set out for the roundabout three miles out of town where we could settle for the evening. We had wanted to get out there before nightfall to avoid having to walk in the dark. This is where the buses do stop. At least most of them do. The one we were supposed to be booked on flew past at a quarter to midnight precisely without so much as a blast on it's horn.

Fortunately there was another bus, and this one not even full, which passed and did stop. The driver was happy to take us to Kigali even after we had bartered the fare down to what we had been told for the other company. Five hours later we were crossing the border and repacking our bags into the hold of the bus after the Rwandan customs inspection. By 7am we were tired but pleased to be rolling into the Nyabigogo bus station and a Kigali which was still coming to its senses in the early morning light. Back to sunny Rwanda.