November 13, 2009

Rwanda photo 1

Hi folks, here's the first photo I'm putting up from the Rwanda trip. There are many more, and I'll try to get some of them sorted out this weekend.

Thanks to all of you who commented on or read my posts from the road, and it's especially nice to get comments from a few new names. Just to repeat for the latter: I went to Rwanda to see a dear friend, Costa, and meet his family, and do some volunteer work having to do with rebuilding traditional mud brick houses and facilitating a self-help inquiry method called The Work of Byron Katie. Costa and his activities are supported by Groundwork Opportunities, a small new nonprofit org whose founders I've met. They're young, hard-working, committed, and knowledgable. A higher percentage of their donations go directly to their projects than just about any foundation's, and they've received funds from the Bill Gates Foundation and elsewhere.

Taken in the front yard of Costa's house in Kigali. Clockwise from top left: Pamela, Isabelle, Denise, Richard, Brenda, Bernadette (Costa's wife), Yves, Gentil, Queen (on lap), Costa (our leader; my brother), Christina, Jon.

I did stick my hand in my wallet pocket, NY style, when in crowds, but the precaution was unnecessary. I have never felt so safe or so welcome. I had no jet lag, no intestinal problems, no flu (though a couple of us had flu or flulike symptoms), no mosquito bites. Just the time of my life.

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