Not all those who wander are lost - but I'll be disappointed if I don't get lost frequently!

Saturday, 28 April 2012

Lake Kivu and the DRC

Today was a day trip to Lake Kivu, on the border with the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). On the way there, out guide stopped the bus and pointed out prisoners convicted of partaking in genocide, serving out their community service in a nearby field. Due to the huge amount of people involved in the genocide and awaiting trial (even now there are still tens of thousands of people awaiting trial), if you admit fault in the community court, you will be sentenced to three years of community service.

Next we pulled up in a small village near Lake Kivu where they had a good view of the three volcanos. Our guide told us it was only a few minutes walk to the view, but it was more like 45 minutes each way! They don't get many mzungu (white people, the literal translation is someone who wanders) at the village so we were swamped by kids who wanted to hold our hands the whole walk through the village. They also thought it was the coolest thing ever to have their photos taken, and laughed so much when they saw the pictures on the cameras LCD screen.

After this we went to the border of Rwanda and the DRC. We were allowed to walk past the Rwandan border and into no-mans land between the two countries. We got within metres of the DRC, it was so close! On the walk in no-mans land, Mel's backpack caused her dress to ride up her back, and she didn't realise until a local came up and pulled her dress down! The locals were laughing so hard.

By this time we were all a bit peckish, so we Went to a bar/ restaurant on the shores of Lake Kivu. There we had some beers while lunch was cooked. I had "fish and chips", which was a whole fish served up on my plate. It was very yummy, but the others who ordered chicken or beef weren't so happy with theirs as the meat was very chewy.

To finish off the day we went for a swim in the lake after lunch.

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