While Tahlia was here, I asked her to write a post about whatever aspect of her time here that she would like. Here it is, in her own words.
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I came to Rwanda to quench my desire to travel and also with the hope of discovering a little more about what I want to do in the future. I’m very interested in third world mission work so I came to see what life is like for a missionary. I appreciated having Mike and Amanda show me around and inviting me into their life. It was really encouraging to have Amanda around while attempting to vaguely plan my life. From experiencing “African time” to living 2 weeks without running water to doing a little preaching, I’d say I got a good taste of being a missionary.
I had many opportunities to hang out and play with the beautiful children of Rwanda. I spent a few days in Kigali with Mike and Tova helping with a kids program during the Genocide Memorial week.
I also got to join Amiss in running a kids program one Saturday morning. Plus it was not uncommon to gather a parade of children when walking down the road. I have a heart for children so I am very grateful for any opportunity to put a big smile on a little face.
It was always fun to hop on the back of a well-used motorbike wearing a “one-size-fits-all” helmet. It’s the perfect time to enjoy the scenery, take in the sights and smells, like the green hills and red dirt, fresh air, boys on bikes with yellow jerry cans, babies bundled on backs. There are many amazing and unique things about Rwanda and any day I got to go out was a good day. I came to the heart of Africa hoping to get a heart for Africa. It’s easy to love the Rwandese people and culture, but I really discovered a love for the team of people working here. It warmed my heart to see their hearts for the Rwandese. The friendships that have been the created, the connections made, the compassion shown. Africa may or may not be where I end up, but the people here are meant to be. And it doesn’t take a miraculous sign to know that God is moving here.
Along with some gardening with Mike, I also got to join Amiss in going to support group and helping out with soccer. There were a few things I missed out on due to changes in plans and everyone here running on “African time.” But you just learn to say “ntakibazo” (no problem) like everyone does. Of course there are ups and downs to every trip, but there was running water and electricity majority of the time, great food, and even better company. It doesn’t get much better than that.
Of course I did do some touristy things. Our drive through Akegera National Park was successful. We had many wonderful animal sightings. In this particular photo I happen to be posing with the playful hippos.