Wednesday, January twentieth second.
We spent the whole day visiting communes and Bourgermeistres (counties and county supervisors or mayors). In Mabanza they want us to organize a food for work project on a 12 km stretch of road. Keith arrived on a new motorcycle for our team. He also brought $50,000 cash in $100 bills.
We had lunch in the village: a loaf of bread, several roasted bananas, shishkabob, and roasted corn with some soft drinks.
I was in Rustiro with Dave (Dauwidi in Kiyarwandize). This commune overlooks Lake Kivu and is at 2,300 meters, a fantastic view and location. The Bougermeistre was a real jerk. Between his office and home are two buildings full of prisoners with hardly enough room to stand let alone sleep. As I walked I hear their voices, return their stares, and feel their pain and hatred. If I had to be responsible and that close to this tension I would probably also be a jerk. He would not look or talk directly to me. Rubero thought he was in some kind of shock. We got home about six P.M. and had another fantastic meal.
Thursday, January twenty third.
More meetings in various communes. We had six people around the supper table tonight. Just to give you an idea, here they are:
Jim Zylstra – American, Divorced, Burundi Director for Dorcus Aid…Dutch based NGO.
Jan – Unmarried, Regional Director for Dorcus Aid.
Dave Van Bergal – Single, Canadian volunteer, age 23, worked in a halfway house.
Pete – Single, 27, Wants to be a farmer, keeps engaged internationally. Worked in Indonesia and Central America.
Bill Buwalda – Canadian, married, lives in Kenya, volunteer, 34, drove truck over for us.
Pete – Canadian, short term volunteer, brother-in-law to Bill.
Myself – American, 51, retired missionary, real estate broker/businessman who feels he does not fit well in this group of young, sharp, “crazy” but wired.
Motivated and fun group.