Met briefly with Eddy in the morning to say good bye and pass on my old Camara T shirts (I’m sure they’ll be fine once he’s given them a good wash). Then, before departing for the airport, I went to meet my Rwandan friend but there was little compromise in his heart. Anyway not much I could do about it now – pass it onto to Trisha and Frank to deal with (thanks guys).
Off to the airport for the long journey home – 5 airports in 26 hours – with feelings that contrasted sharply with those of December 2008 when I visited last.
“…………. I can say that after three weeks on the road I can not imagine a better or more satisfying experience than traveling around Africa and watching Camara take root. To see each of the Hubs established (or re-established), to see each of their different personalities taking shape, to meet the staff, volunteers, partners, schools and donors that have all played their part, and to learn something new and different every day – its just the best job in the world!” (Cormac’s Diary – Saturday December 6th 2008)
Africa is not for the faint of heart. It is not for those seeking short term victories or easy solutions. It is not for those looking for a pat on the back from an adoring public or for those who are afraid to fail, again and again. It is hard work, it is frustrating and it sometimes wants to make you cry. But the ordinary people are wonderfully warm, generous and full of life. Their smiles are infectious and their sense of gratitude immense. They deserve so much better than what their leaders give them and I will be back again older and wiser but no less committed to their struggle.