Yesterday as I was riding my bike down a gorgeous single track, (actually a heavily traveled foot path Rwandans use to navigate from their tiny mountain villages to town), I experienced a sense of deja vu. I had dreamt of this moment for months. Jock, Suzanne, Rebecca, Rambo and I rode about 33 kilometers to Le Foyer de Charite, a gorgeous retreat on the top of a long climb. We laid on the lawn relaxing and taking pictures and trying to recover. From there we had a screaming fast descent down to the dam and along some gorgeous singletrack. I remember seeing my first Project Rwanda video showing Tom Ritchey riding through Rwanda and thinking, that will be me someday. Today it was me!
The question I get asked most here in Rwanda is, "How did you come to work with Project Rwanda?" Every time I answer that question I marvel myself at the road I took to get here.
About a year and a half ago, I was transitioning into a new job, leaving US Foodservice in search of the next rung in the corporate ladder. I was frustrated and searching for something that would make me happy. I thought the advancement in my career would fill the void. I couldn't have been more wrong. Three months later, I moved to Sysco as a Business Development Manager. This appeared to be my dream job, good income, great potential, meeting, schmoozing and loving on new clients and yet that nagging feeling that I should be doing something else with my life kept haunting me. I must have voiced my wish for clarity to God a million times...or at least once a day. Then one day in September I heard the answer.
I was reading Outside Magazine, September 2008, and came across the story of Project Rwanda. I knew the second I began reading that I was staring at my life search answer head on. When you become crystal clear with yourself about what is important to you and where your passions lie, then ask for the life to manifest that quest and be open to the possibilities then most importantly, take action. If you do not take the action the signs may stop appearing. God can only beat you over the head for so long.
I was laser focused on the things that roused my passion: helping people, cycling and traveling. By knowing what moved me the article leaped off the page and the story into my heart. I was done. I started the process of tracking down the people I needed to get to in order to volunteer with Project Rwanda. Honestly, did I think I'd end up in Rwanda while I made the first contact, yes. I completely expected it. I cannot begin to tell you the serenity of going down the exact road you should be on, the one you've been traveling toward your entire life.
So, tonight I sit in a Rwandan cafe behind the hotel La Palme, with my new friend Rebecca blogging away about my journey, watching the rain, drinking a cold Primus and eating really crappy French Fries. I wonder if they've heard about the Lamb Weston Stealth long hold fry...I digress.....