Kigali is a beautiful city nestled among rolling green hills and I woke up early in the St Famille hostel to sun streaming through my window. Since starting my trip this was the first day that I didn’t have meetings or places to visit so I spent the morning reading Dallaire’s account of the genocide. I though I had become immune to the bloodshed in his book and then I came across this eye witness account from a UN soldier (p 314):
“Children between the ages of 10 and 12 years old killed children. Mothers with babies on their backs killed mothers with babies on their backs. They threw babies into the air and mashed them on the ground.”
For brunch I met Maria and Fintan in the nearby ‘Blues’ Cafe, a favourite hangout for back packers traveling through Kigali. Maria who is a marketing professional and Fintan a PhD student (and Belvedere old boy) are the two Rwandan team coordinators this year and essentially the ‘Mummy’ and ‘Daddy’ of the Camara training team for the next four weeks. Neither had been to Africa before and they told me they spent the previous week learning the very necessary skills of haggling with the locals. It seems that Maria being from Greece had no problem with this but Fintan being Irish found the whole thing too embarrassing for words. Both were off to the Genocide Museum this afternoon, an essential part of their African experience but just a bit too much for me at the moment.
Can anyone name the four generally accepted genocides that have taken place in modern times? Answer after the next post.
Press-ups 330, Situps 0, Bicep curls 100 (Still struggling with those situps)