Kwibuka23 – remembering the Rwandan Genocide

It’s eerily quiet this morning. The only sound is birds signing, a rooster crowing somewhere in the distance, and rain lightly tapping on the roof. No cars, no people walking around, no voices. The only human noise I’ve heard so far is the neighbours’ little child crying.

Today Rwanda commemorates the beginning of the Genocide in 1994. Over the 100 days that followed, over 800,000 people were slaughtered.  Continue reading “Kwibuka23 – remembering the Rwandan Genocide”

Killing dogs in Rwanda (updated)

I am a member of a Facebook group for expats in Rwanda, and it’s a great forum for literally anything – if you want to buy or sell something, get a pet, need tips about hotels, restaurants or things to do in the country and the region, look for advice on best internet provider, or just want to find friends. People also share their experiences of everyday life in Rwanda, including stories of best croissants they ever tasted, best massage and manicure in town, cool events they’ve attended, but also less cheerful stories of burglaries or thefts, bad customer service, etc. A few days ago a member posted that their two pups had been poisoned at night and died. The discussion that ensued made me want to scream… Continue reading “Killing dogs in Rwanda (updated)”

Hiking in South Africa – Cederberg (part 2)

Time to share some more hiking stories and photos from my recent trip to South Africa! In my previous post about the Cederberg I told you a bit about this magical place and how hot it was! But the temperature didn’t deter us and we were rewarded with another fantastic day out which included climbing rocks, admiring rock paintings (not only those made by the Bushmen!) and drinking lovely wine 🙂  Continue reading “Hiking in South Africa – Cederberg (part 2)”

Garden of the Plagues by Russel Brownlee

I can’t remember where or when I got this book, but most probably at some charity sale in Pretoria as it cost me only R30 (about $2), according to the sticker. I do remember that the title caught my attention, and then the recommendation blurb from Andre Brink, one of South Africa’s greatest writers. But it sat on the shelf for a couple of years, and I finally decided to read it during my recent holidays in South Africa. I thought I’d try this concept of reading a book about a place I’m visiting, so I took “Garden of the Plagues” and “Heartland” by Jann Turner, both of which are novels set in the Cape but their contexts are quite different. The latter tells a great story of love, friendship and historical change as South Africa faces the new dawn after the fall of apartheid (and I’ll post a review later). Brownlee’s book is set in the 17th century though, at the start of European colonisation of this part of the world, and I found his portrayal of this period quite fascinating. Continue reading “Garden of the Plagues by Russel Brownlee”

Hiking in South Africa – Cederberg (part 1)

I haven’t been around for a while, so where was I? In South Africa, actually 🙂 It so happened that friends we know from Pretoria invited us to their wedding at a vineyard in Stellenbosch, and you simply can’t refuse such an invitation, can you 😀 And since it’s actually a bit of a trek from Rwanda as there are no direct flights (you fly to Johannesburg, stay the night there as the plane lands at 22:30, and then fly to Cape Town the next day, which is another two hours), so we decided to make a holiday out of it and finally get to this one place we never managed to visit while we lived in SA, and which was still on my “must visit” list. Welcome to the Cederberg!
Continue reading “Hiking in South Africa – Cederberg (part 1)”