Tuesday, September 9, 2014


Well, I have officially been in Bujumbura for three weeks! It seems crazy that almost a month has already gone by. I am slowly getting to know the city and the culture.

One weekend I was able to visit the zoo. It was really interesting and really neat to be able to get up close to some of the animals. There is a picture somewhere of me holding a (small) python! The zoo was an experience, but also maybe not great in the animal rights department. I was able to meet this guy though:

I also ended that night by watching hippos fighting in the lake! 

I was also able to go to a church service at the cathedral in Bujumbura. I went to the early French service. There were about 150 people there probably and I had to introduce myself to all of them (unexpectedly). It was a good time though. Very similar to the service at home, but with different music! I didn't take this picture, but here is a view of the entrance to the cathedral! 

The geography new me is like this from west to east: lake, city, hills. My neighborhood is just on the hills on the eastern side of the city. I am a bit out of town, but it is nice and I really like where I am living. I skipped it this weekend, but the other weekends I was able to go on a hike up into the hills by my house. There were some pretty incredible views of the city from there. And the hills themselves are very pretty. The colors are great too. It is a good climb! A lot of it is like steep stairs just going up and up and endlessly up. Here are some pictures of the hills, and a view from part way up looking down at the city and the lake!

Speaking of exercise, the first ever Bujumbura Marathon was held last weekend here! It is the first marathon in Burundi, and was a big success. So many people were there. It was very family friendly and fun. I ran the just ran the 5k. The winner of the half marathon was a former Olympic champion from Kenya. I think that's cheating.

This Sunday I went to the beach! It was really really nice. I swam and read my book in the sun. Doesn't get better than that. In this picture you can see the other side of the city! Instead of looking down from the hills, you can look over from the lake. Perspective.

The little boat is a water taxi I think. Though I'm not sure where he'd go. Maybe a restaurant down the beach.

Work is starting (slowly)! I will be working with the Anglican Province of Burundi a lot with their programs relating to sexual and gender based violence (SGBV). I never thought I would be working in this field, but I am actually really excited about it! More to come on that hopefully. Last week we met with some people from Episcopal Relief and Development who consulted with us about a plan for the future. It was a great meeting and made me really hopeful about the work to come. I am so grateful for being here at the start of such an important project.

As some of you may have seen in the news recently, three Italian nuns were brutally killed and raped in Bujumbura. It is not clear yet what the motivation was for these terrible murders. I am safe and in a really safe neighborhood, though not terribly far from where the nuns lived. Please pray for them, for those who knew them, their ministries, and for those who carried out the murders. 

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the update, Carolyn. I was just checking out your blog to see if you had posted anything new and you had! I've seen many of your pictures on Facebook, but your descriptions help bring it alive. I saw the news accounts about the frightening attack on the nuns and I will pray for them and theirs, as I pray for you, dear one. Sending a big hug half a world away.