Monday, February tenth.

Daily I try to get into the field and participate in the distributions but it never happens. There is too much organizational stuff to coordinate. Every day or so we hear of atrocities. This is a scary place. We learned two small vans, each holding about 19 passengers were stopped on the Ruhengeri Road, about 70 km outside of Kigali, not that far way. One van was blown up. Hutu and Tutsi were separated, all Tutsi were killed on the spot.
I spent the day dealing with financial issues and arranging for setting up several tree nurseries. We have seven common species of tree, one-kilogram seed for each. My guess is that we have close to 500,000 seeds. If we could get two thirds of them out as young seedlings, that would be totally exciting.

Each day Maritini Rucyohono does my laundry, among other things. I just set a small pile outside my door. In the evening it is washed, folded, and ironed, even the underwear. I pay this guy an outstanding stipend of $45.00 per month. One piece of underwear was thin bare. It even had a major hole in it. He wanted permission for him to take it to the tailor who for thirty cents would fix it. I refused and gave it to him instead. He was overjoyed. He jumped up and down and gave me a high five.

This is the second night in a row the lights went our promptly at 7:00 P.M, the same time darkness settles over the land. I went to bed at 8:00. I went right to sleep and woke up refreshed at 1:30 A.M. Disgusting.

 

 

 

 

Tuesday, February eleventh.

Another exciting day. I expect Jim back from Burundi, Keith and Janet from Kenya, and perhaps Dave and Pete back from Kampala, Uganda. We have distributed over 3,000 hoes to needy and vulnerable families the last couple of days. I just paid for another five ton of seed and later in the evening discovered that an additional eleven ton had been delivered. While thinking significantly reducing program length or withdrawal altogether, I just made a commitment to purchase another twenty ton of soya bean and mixed high-altitude bean seed from the local economy. I am spending money left and right, creating a market where there is none, putting cash into these communities which desperately need it.

Received a phone call from the US home office asking about our personal safety. A little late but a nice thought.
I went to the airport to pick up Keith and Janet. They were not even on the manifest. I called Nairobi. I was told they the flight had left early and they missed it. They got as far as Kampala and would hopefully arrive tomorrow on Rwanda Air.

On the way to Kigali, Silas, one of our local guys, tells me about having a drink with his friends on Sunday evening. Monday afternoon, he got word the bodies of two of them had been found about 15 km away from Gitarama. The word on the ground is that a soldier was interested in the fiancé of one of the men. For a country that does not allow weapons or personal arms, there sure are a lot of bodies lying around. Jim and I were trading death and scary experiences this evening.

Got my tickets for flying out of here today.

 

 

Sign Up to be notified of each post from Lou