Monday, 2 December 2013

More car problems

We fuelled up at Gitarama, and bowled down the beautiful tarmac to Butare where the road heads off to the Nyungwe Forest.

This is one of the main roads to the DRC, and passing along it you drive through massive refugee camps run by the UNHCR.  These are tented encampments, on steep hills housing people displaced by the conflicts in the Congo and in Burundi.

These hill top camps are pretty sobering, especially knowing where we are going to be sleeping for the next few nights.

After about an hours drive from Butare, we entered the Nyungwe Forest, one of the last remaining montane rain forests left in Africa.  The temperature here is kept at a nice level, as we are pretty high up.

At a quiet spot on the road, which seems very rare in Rwanda, we stopped for a pee.  The trick to this is to stop very quickly, and jump out and pee as fast as you can, because it will only be a few moments before someone comes along to find out what you are up to.

After having our quick pit stop, we noticed that once again we had a flat tyre.  Oh for goodness sake.

I got the jack out, and out of nowhere a wee boy appeared and started talking away in a language we couldn't understand.  Almost everyone we had met so far spoke very good English or a little French, but this lad had neither.  He also didn't have any shoes, and the clothes he was wearing were filthy and full of holes.  This was also pretty rare in Rwanda, as the kids were generally spotlessly clean.

He helped me undo the nuts, and remove the wheel and then replace it with the spare.   A man on a bike joined us, but he just stood around making helpful comments to the boy.  I gave the lad a few coins for helping us, but what he really wanted (according the to bike man) was a pair of shoes - did we have any spare

The power steering gave out as we headed down the drive way to the Nyungwe Forest Lodge.

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