By: Eric & Rachel McLaughlin
Amahoro! Not only has our team reunited in Burundi, but we are now safely installed in our home for the next three months. Individual travel sagas may be coming soon, but we wanted to share a couple images of our world here.
We are 1.5 hours from the capital and about 2 hours from Kibuye Hospital, here in a little village called Banga. It is deep in the Burundian highland hills, where the end of the dry season is only weeks away. There is a Catholic guesthouse here, and they have two houses, a restaurant, and a classroom (among other lodgings) that we are using for the next three months to start learning Kirundi, the heart language of all of Burundi. We will be using French as the language to learn this next foreign language. We found a teacher in a local high school teacher currently on leave, and the community is perfect for starting (awkward) conversations with complete strangers.
The two houses are on the hillside, and our view is quite nice, only to get nicer when the rains come. The view below is from the porch of one house, and the little building in the center is the guesthouse campus where we walk to class and meals. The sunset is great. There is a Catholic church next door with simply stunning a capella music.
Here is one of the two houses. (The other is identical.) A living room, three bedrooms, each with a bathroom. No kitchen, since one is not expected to eat there. Both electricity and running water are quite intermittent, but candles, flashlights, and large buckets of water reserve are in place to get one through the gaps. Overall, this place is an answer to prayer: Safe and open for kids to play. Friendly community to learn language with. Peaceful, in a location where we are all together. A restaurant so that we are not spending all day learning how to prepare meals in a new culture (which yes, can take all day).
Slow internet is to be had via USB modems that work through the cell network. So more to come soon!