Wednesday, 29 January 2014

On to Kigali

Feeling refreshed after our few day's R&R at Nyungwe, it was time to hit the road to Kigali.

On the road out of Nyungwe

As I've mentioned before, I never thought I would visit Rwanda never mind Kigali whose name conjures up images of hell.  It seems so strange driving through this beautiful and peaceful country passing smiling people and colourful farms and villages, that the worst atrocities since the holocaust took place here.  What on earth happened?

My holiday reading of An Ordinary Man (the book later made into the film Hotel Rwanda) is making the horror all the more real and making the juxtaposition all the more stark when looking out at the countryside. I have to say that I am not in a very positive frame of mind when we hit the outskirts of the city.

Luckily it's nowhere near as mental as Kampala as far as the traffic goes, although there is still plenty of it.  However it wasn't long before we realised that the street names on our map were nothing like the street names on the few signs that were around.  Luckily my sense of direction seemed to have returned, and we ended up in roughly the right area of town.  Stopping to ask a security man sitting beside a gate to a compound, he told us we were on the right road, but he hadn't heard of the guest house we were looking for.  We drove around a bit - in what was obviously a very nice neighbourhood - huge houses, big gardens, security guards everywhere, no pot-holes.

As we approached the same junction for the third time, and just as Karen was about to lose her temper, I spotted a tiny sign for the Kigali Guest Lux - up an unfinished road leading to a building site.

Google has the address as Avenue de Lac Kivu, and places the guest house in what is actually a cement factory.  In fact it is on what google maps calls KG 414 st.  I think.

The staff appear very surprised to see us, despite me booking months ago, but they showed us to an enormous room with a huge bed.  Unfortunately there doesn't appear to be any hot water.

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