Wednesday, May 27, 2009

A picture of Lake Kivu

Although we expect to travel around quite a bit, our headquarters for two months will be Bukavo; a town that is located on the most southern point of Lake Kivu. I found this great picture from NASA. Lake Kivu is one of the Great Lakes of Africa; it lies on the border between the DR Congo (to the west) and Rwanda (to the east).

Monday, May 25, 2009

My first post. Hurrah!

My first post from... Montpellier, France. A little bit more than a week and I will take the plane from Amsterdam to Kamembe; a town in Rwanda close to the border of the DR Congo. Well, I will actually fly from Amsterdam to Nairobi (Kenya), and then to Kigali (Rwanda) where we will stay one evening. Then the next day we fly to Kamembe, where we will be picked up by people from the IRC. But I am running ahead of myself; that is not for another week.

At the moment I am in Montpellier to speed-study French. Montpellier is a great city. At least, I think it is. It should be. I saw on the map that it is located in a seemingly fantastic area of France, and the beach seems to be nearby. I emphasize 'seemingly' and 'seems' as I haven't experienced any of that yet. From around 930-1230 I have French class in a group, from around 2-4pm I have private classes and then at around 7pm I have dinner with my French hostess who only speaks French. In the evenings I am finishing up work that (of course) wasn't finished when I left New York, and am preparing for the Congo. I do have to say that often I do the latter while wearing shorts, sitting on a terrace somewhere in Montpellier and drinking a glas of red wine. But, in the end, the only reason why I am in Montpellier is the Democratic Republic of Congo; the latter is also the reason for this blog.

I expect internet to be only sporadically available. As a result, to keep family (which includes a worried mom) and friends up to date, I created this blog. I'll do my utmost to upload a few lines whenever possible. Also, I take a digital camera along so I hope to take some nice shots once in a while and upload them. Why I am heading to the Congo? What will I be doing there? This will hopefully become clear in upcoming posts. For now this blog is up and running. Hurrah! Garcon un autre verre de vin s'il vous plait!