“The Zookeeper’s Wife” at the cinema in Kigali

On Sunday, 25th June I had the pleasure to participate in the screening of “The Zookeeper’s Wife”, a Hollywood film with Jessica Chastain in the title role. The event was organised by the Polish Embassy in Nairobi and the Kigali Genocide Memorial. The film tells the story of the owners of the Warsaw Zoo who during World War 2 sheltered many Jews and saved their lives. The screening was preceded by an interesting panel discussion with Ambassador Marek Rohr-Garztecki, Permanent Representative of Poland to the UN in Nairobi, Agnieszka Klonowiecka-Milart, Judge of the UN Tribunal for the Khmer Rouge, and Anita Kayirangwa, responsible for education projects at the Kigali Genocide Memorial. An exhibition entitled “Righteous Without Borders”, prepared by the Warsaw Museum of the History of Polish Jews POLIN, was shown on the screen. Continue reading ““The Zookeeper’s Wife” at the cinema in Kigali”

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A Sunday at the Pool in Kigali by Gil Courtemanche

Most literary works about Rwanda, both fiction and non-fiction, focus on the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi. There are very few books which don’t have those atrocities at the centre of their narratives (although I have read a couple: Roz Carr’s memoir and Gaile Parkin’s feel-good novel). However, it’s not at all surprising as these events are still haunting every Rwandan – I don’t think there is one national of this country who was not affected by it. Everyone here lost someone in the 1990s. Canadian journalist and author Gil Courtemanche arrived in Rwanda shortly after the Genocide but in his first novel, first published in Canada in 2000 (the English translation came out in 2003), he managed to recreate the horrible events in such a convincing way that it reads like a very moving memoir.  Continue reading “A Sunday at the Pool in Kigali by Gil Courtemanche”

Internet in Rwanda

It’s time to bust a myth around the quality of internet connection in Rwanda. I held on to my belief that it’s awesome for as long as I could (it certainly used to be very good – in the About me tab you will read that it was faster here than in South Africa – well, it really was, two years ago). Well, it’s time to stop fooling myself and face reality: it’s not that awesome at all. Continue reading “Internet in Rwanda”

New (crazy) prices of gorilla trekking permits

Yesterday the Rwanda Development Board announced new tariffs for gorilla trekking in the Volcanoes National Park. They doubled the price and don’t offer discounts to residents anymore. Actually, this is a fixed price for everyone, including Rwandans! Smart move, or have RDB shot themselves in the foot? Continue reading “New (crazy) prices of gorilla trekking permits”

In the land of green lemons and powerful bosses: things that can surprise you in Rwanda ;)

I once wrote about things I was getting used to in Rwanda, and I think I am indeed already used to them 😉 But this doesn’t mean there aren’t other things which I still find strange or surprising. Nothing big mainly, but still. Like lemons 🙂
Continue reading “In the land of green lemons and powerful bosses: things that can surprise you in Rwanda ;)”