Thursday, June 6, 2013
Five weeks from today I'll be on that big silver bird heading for Chicago!
Friday, JUNE 7, 2013
Actually, I just found out I'll be leaving here on Wed., July 10 and arriving in Chicago on July 11. Even better!
Sunday, June 9, 2013
I seem to be having difficulty finishing this blog entry. I'm determined to finish it tonight!
I've learned some things about my travel back to the midwest. I will only be allowed two bags of no more than 27 kilos each (that eliminates Julia). Whereas the Clinton Foundation paid for my extra baggage on the way over, no one will pay for it going home. Actually, these have helped me make a decision. I will likely leave quite a bit here in my house. I'll try just to pack my clothes and see what happens!
This coming Thursday Miriam and I will go to Kigali for shopping. She said she knows where some good shops are and I need to look for gifts. I will be looking for small items!
Jerome (the director of the school and for whom I am supposed to be the advisor, and I are considering how to set up an exchange between the students at UIC (my school in Chicago) and the Byumba school here. For one thing, we've been told that he should get his Visa while I am still here to vouch for him in person. That will take a good day at the American Embassy. They are slow there, and not particularly helpful. We also need to consider some logistics of such a project. I would love to see it happen. Both groups of students will be in culture shock, but it would be good for them all. And I'm hoping this project would earn me trips back to Rwanda and some trips to Chicago for Jerome who is most anxious to go there. We shall see.
The cow and her cowlet are doing fine. The little group of chickens on campus have suddenly taken up residence in my yard. They can eat a few bugs. They no longer lay eggs, and I have a feeling they are too tough to cook. They, however, add a little to the general landscape out here in the boonies. I went to Kigali yesterday afternoon so some of my friends could take me out for a farewell dinner. I actually saw that the sorghum growing in the valley has grown a little seed head on it. And, Mike, I've been told that sorghum is the basis for one of Rwanda's most advertised beers. (Called Primus). I drank some one time and did not find it pleasing!
The restaurant we went to for our dinner last night was interesting. They have only two things on the menu: grilled chicken, and grilled fish. They serve it without cutlery of any kind. You wash your hands at one of several stations around the room, then just dig in with your fingers and hands. The flavor of both meats was terrific and it was fun just to eat with our hands. I especially enjoyed the fish. They grill one big fish and put it on a platter for you to have your way with! Of course, we were all sharing, but I'm convinced I could have eaten that fish all by myself!
A group of administrators at the school has asked me to show them how to make cornbread. I think I'll have them over next weekend to show them. Most of them do not have ovens, so we're going to discuss how to make it over coals or some sort of stove. Rwandans are not dessert eaters; they do not clamber for new recipes for "baked goods". But somehow they really liked the cornbread I made for some event this past year. I guess I'll leave my small mark in this way.
Well, off to bed to rest up for another busy week. I'm going to begin experimenting with my packing to see how much 23 kilos is!
My best to all of you.
CA, Mom, Ma, Carrol, G-ma