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21Publish - Cooperative Publishing
Entries "February 2006":

Friday, 17 February 2006

Chapter 2

Well how are you all?  I'm doing alright here, busy teaching, preparing a workshop and trekking back and forth to Butare non-stop it would seem.  The big news right now is that Geert (housemate, colleague and friend) has left the building!  Yes he has decided to go home to Belgium.... to return later? ... That is yet to be seen.  So for now it's just me and Sylvester in the house.  The house feels eerily empty even with the radio turned on full blast (just as Sylvester likes it), children knocking on the gate asking for notebooks and pens, and my marking piling up ominously all over the main room. 

This weekend I'm back in Butare and am going to try to get some work done.  I have some preparations to do for next week's English Teachers workshop in Nyagatare.  I also have an obscene amount of corrections to do and they've been sitting (Cristal Moon style) on my coffee table for a couple of weeks.  With 9 x 45 students, 1 paragraph each, oh God I don't think I'll finish until next January.  I have good intentions to buckle down this weekend but so far I've been distracted by the COPABU, shop in Butare that sells local crafts, and the market where I like to wander looking at all the fabric, dreaming up the perfect new dress, or skirt, or shirt, or pants, or well you get the picture. I must get work done on the weekend though because I teach 27 hours in 4 days and I don't seem to be able to do much else.  Antonia and I are also hoping to get going on our big theatrical project.  We're waiting for the response to our grant application, but it looks hopeful. This week I've invited some friends/colleagues over for dinner (Elson, Emmanuel, and Evariste) and I'm going to prepare a nice italian meal.  Yes I've figured out how to make bruschetta on the kerosene stove and for dessert, bananas dipped in chocolate!  That's all for now.

Hi Geert if you're reading out there!

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Written by: cathie78    in: My travelblog
Friday, 03 February 2006

Murekatete Mutimukeye

It's a mouthful I know.  But that is my new name.  I no longer respond to Cathie, nope, it's Murekatete Mutimukeye.  On Wednesday evening I had my newly painted and decorated living room full of fifteen people ready to name me.  It started as a joke but it turned out to be a rather formal ceremony.  I thought through the evening carefully, planned what food to serve, what drinks to buy, how to arrange the chairs.  I thought I had thought of everything but of course I didn't plan the most important part of any Rwandan ceremony... the M.C.  After a few awkward moments while people waited for somebody to start the speeches, Geert took on the role and then passed "la parole" over to Elson who explained how things would proceed.  Each person was to stand up and state the name they had chosen for me and explain why they chose it.  I was a bit, well a lot, overwhelmed by all the nice things people said about me.  Even the "directeur" of the school came.  He chose four different names for me.  In the end though, it was a committee of 3 teachers who had already decided on the name.  They had written it on a piece of paper, put it in an envelope and the director read it out.  So, what does it mean?  Well Murekatete means "spoiled child", which is a popular compliment around here.  Mutimukeye means "good heart".  So there you have it. 

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Written by: cathie78    in: My travelblog