Waterlessness, Fatigue and The End of My Rope

Remera is in the midst of a water shortage. Melissa and I have only been briefly affected, because our landlord has two big cisterns of reserve water on the property. It is a bit scary when no water comes out of the pipes. I remember the sort of panic that washed over me when the tap was dry. We use water for everything. We are so fragile and depend on so many things, us humans.

I am ready for Canada. There is only a week or so left and it feels like nothing, like no time at all. I travel the streets of Kigali and feel a bit attached. But also a bit of a disconnect. Kigali has been hard on me. There are times I feel the city is falling apart at the seams: nothing works, it’s pouring rain, streets are flooded, there’s no electricity or water in the pipes, all the internet is down, groceries in the store are lacking. But things just continue, people just continue. Without pause. I am just not that flexible. I wonder if I could someone learn to be so fine with everything.

Dogs bark and keep me up at night, thinking. What am I taking with me from here? Melissa and I sat at La Galette for lunch today and wondered to ourselves what we would miss about Kigali. We know there are things to be missed. I know I am changed. In a way, for the worse; in a way, for the better. I am more impatient about development; I am more patient. I don’t want to do development; I have to do development. I am fluent in French (almost). I think I am more tired in the eyes, but maybe a little less naive. I have made awesome friends. I am a grant proposal and strategic plan producing machine.

“I want to make a dent in the universe.” I saw that quote today and it is exactly how I feel. I have no idea if I made a dent here but it did make a dent in me.

Will write soon about Uganda.


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