Kigali to Musanze


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Published: July 2nd 2012
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I had intended going to the Genocide Memorial in Kigali this morning but had not realised the extent to which Umuganda applies. The streets are completely empty of vehicles, including taxis and motos as every person 18 or over, including the President, is expected to clean up their local area from 8.00am - 11.00am. Will have to put the Genocide Memorial off to another day. Wandered down to the bus station to wait for my bus to Musanze and got talking to a 20 year old Rwandan Engineering Student. His story was a pretty harrowing one with him and his sister being orphaned in the 1994 genocide. He was 2 and she just 8 months old at the time. Some how he made it from Musanze, in the north of Rwanda to the UN camps in Bujumbura where he stayed with an uncle for a couple of years. At that point they were taken in by a friend of their mother's and went back to Musanze. He is in his 2nd year at Kampala nd his sister has just started studying Economics in Kigali while he looks for work wherever he can to pay both their fees. Despite everything they have been through they are determined to succeed and appear to be doing so.

The bus journey up to Musanze was only 2 hours and passes through some breathtaking scenery. The mountains that make up the Parc National des Volcans are quite awe-inspiring and a little daunting when I contemplate the fact that we will have to climb part way up one of them to view the Gorillas in the morning.

The Hotel Muhabura, where I'm staying was the first hotel in Musanze and was where Dianne Fossey stayed when she came down from the mountains. It's the nicest place I've stayed in Rwanda and has a great patio area for having a beer and watching the world go by.

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