Saturday, 4 June 2011

Suddenly it's the Dry Season....

The road building continues
 For weeks it has been raining almost constantly – just like being in the Lake District, only the mountains are more numerous and closer together. Then one day it didn’t rain... and the next day it didn’t rain... and now it hasn’t rained for over a week. The roads are already very dry and dusty. The tarmaced roads are ok, but riding on the back of a moto on an earth road in the wake of a lorry , bus or car is very challenging. The driver is hard pushed to see where he is going, especially if he doesn’t have a visor on his helmet. So we travel slowly and arrive at our destination covered in a light red dust.
Imagine the dust cloud from this lorry

I watched a mum with a baby on her back and shopping in her hand get on the back of a moto. Before they set off she passed her shopping to the driver who put it in the front, then she wrapped an extra piece of cloth around the baby so that his head was completely covered by the cloth to protect him from the dust. Then she put her helmet on and off they went... I wish I had a photo.

Making teaching materials

I can't resist... 
This week’s travelling has been up to one of the beautiful rural areas. The training is for three days and so we travel up on Monday mornings, stay overnight at the priests’ house and return on Wednesday afternoon. This week we had a science training day for senior school teachers, followed by a science day for primary school teachers and then a social studies day for primary teachers.  Our main aim is to encourage pupil participation and active learning methods, to make learning fun and effective. We certainly had fun, and it was great to see teachers taking on board all the new ideas and methods. We introduced role play and as Rwandans have a great sense of fun they really threw themselves into it.

The lads enjoying themselves

Health and Safety Exec eat your heart out!
A day off school and best clothes
Whilst we were at the priests house there was an amazing celebration at the church including an outdoor service of Mass for 6000 people!! The singing and music and drumming was wonderful. The crowd was enormous and we had difficulty getting through but a kind man cleared a path for us.

Everyone was enjoying themselves and many many people in the community were involved, it was a very special day. 

The clearing up afterwards took no time at all with all the willing helpers.

The local children had the day off school. Some of you will remember playing with a similar toy when you were young!!

After such a strenuous week I was glad to get home and relax with my knitting. Thanks Cat – my scarf is going to be beautiful, and warm during the next rainy season xx

Lots of love to everyone. I hope you are enjoying some lovely long summer evenings. 

P.S. I think the 'Comments' gadget is not working and I don't know how to fix it, sorry about that but please feel free to send an e- mail. 


  1. some great pics here...the colours are amazing..x

  2. Thanks Treasure

    Everything is covered in a fine red dust - all the leaves by the side of the road have turned red - how can they continue to photosynthesise if their pores are blocked??

  3. comments work, you just have to just a profile to comment with (most people have a google account).

    Oh and loved the picture of you knitting!

  4. Hi Tricia,

    Joined the wagon late, just stumbled upon your blog searching for news on Rwanda on Google.

    I am a Rwandan leaving in London so, reading your blog is more than a pleasure: thank you.

    I just had an idea re: help making your teaching materials.

    There's a possibilities of making them en mass if you involve the Boys and Girls Scouts!! Thousands of them all over the country who love competition and can provide the materials themselves -most of the times.

    See if it's fusible with ASR (Association des Scouts du Rwanda)& Association des Guides du Rwanda.

    Best wishes,

    P.S.: I sent a message to the minister of local governance (Hon. James Musoni)on Facebook hehehe about finding a way to create a map of the locations of the schools... rice sacs good, map better... I think!

    Karim M.