Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Land of a Thousand Hills, Many Meetings and Missing Luggage

I woke up this morning in Rwanda. It would have seemed strange, however, I was preoccupied with the hope that my underwear and socks had dried enough overnight or not been eaten by the circa 1980's fan that was doubling as a dryer. Yes, I made it all the way to Kigali, Rwanda after traveling from Las Vegas, through Atlanta, to Amsterdam, to Nairobi and finally into Kigali, my luggage, however, did not. Twenty-two hours of flying and thirty-two hours of airport time carries with it a certain filmy not so fresh feeling. PLEASE, let that underwear be dry. I borrowed some shampoo and deodorant from the Project Rwanda Director I had just met for the first time this morning and hit the ground running.

By the way, Old Spice does not smell good on a woman just in case you were wondering.

Jake, the American PR board member from Minneapolis, and I met this morning at 9:00am (11:00pm my bodily clock time) to discuss our proposal with URWEGO Opportunity Bank. Then we made a futile airport run to inquire about the missing luggage, 57 bags in lost and found and not one red back from Las Vegas. I'm in my happy place, think positive....

We headed to Bourbon Coffee in the United Trade Center, right around the corner from Hotel Mille Collines (Hotel Rwanda for those of you who do not know, the operator of this hotel, Paul Rusesabagina saved hundreds of Rwandans fleeing the genocide). At Bourbon I met Jock Boyer, the Team Rwanda Director, two gentlemen from Thousand Hills, an adventure tour company, and the former Project Rwanda Bike Director, Tim Mizura. I was brought up to speed by Tim on PR developments and we also talked about adding a bike tour leg to the Thousand Hills tours. Looks very promising.

Then, a mad dash for some clean underwear, makeup (didn't think that was going to be so difficult but then again, I'm a Mizungu).

Jake, Jock and I met with Owen, Tom and Mishuti, a very impressive Rwandan with big ideas and great execution. By 9:30pm, Jake and I finally grabbed some dinner and then.....

.....the call....the "We've got your luggage!" call...Happy Girl now wearing clean underwear.

Tomorrow, hiring a Bike Director, meeting with URWEGO bank, a business workshop to attend, just another day in doing what I LOVE!

By the way, google Mizungu.

1 comment:

  1. When I googled "mizungu" it is spelled white girl, you.

    You are so up and running.