Getting Ready for Rwanda and remembrances from 1986


Spent some time getting supplies ready for my upcoming trip (June 22-July1). I’m always a bit stymied on what and how much to bring for clothes. Should I go light like a good Brit would? 2 shirts, 2 pants and call it good? What about my camera? I have a digital as well as a quality Minolta with a couple of lenses to choose from. What makes for a few nice gifts for those I meet?

I’ll be sure to have a couple of notebooks handy for writing my thoughts–since I won’t be bringing my laptop. Hope I can still write legibly. In looking for a few items, I came across my last travel journal from 1986-7 (Wow, 22 years since my last trip off the continent!). I was given it by college classmate Beth Lindenschmid (so it says on the inside cover) as a gift before leaving for a semester in Israel. What fun reading through it. Here’s a couple of things I noticed about life in 1987:

  1. I must have been popular. I got lots of letters from friends and family. And I wrote them too (and not the easy email kind).
  2. Out of all the folks I was either corresponding with or hanging out with, only one (outside of my parents) have I had any contact with in the last few years. Sad.
  3. I was worried about money. Postage seemed to be a big concern for me in my travel journal. How would I get to Egypt (I didn’t)?
  4. A good day entailed a nice view of some place in Israel, a freshly made pita, and a few friends for conversation. Pretty simple life.  
  5. I seemed pretty flexible then. We traveled places without an itinerary, found rooms to rent by meeting people on the street, walked in pretty remote places without as much as a map. I don’t feel quite as flexible as that on this trip though given our lack of specific itinerary (or correctly stated: our lack of knowing said itinerary), I’m likely to need to be more flexible than I like to be.  

4 Comments

Filed under Rwanda

4 responses to “Getting Ready for Rwanda and remembrances from 1986

  1. karenestelle

    Just returned from two weeks in Ethiopia. Be sure you are taking the once a week malaria preventative meds. We had three young people contract malaria on our trip because they were given docycicline instead of the mefloquine. You might want to have a doctor give you a prescription for Cipro to take along as well. It’s just a broad spectrum anti-biotic that works well if you would run into issues with dysentery. And avoid any open toe shoes. They have little bugs that can bore under your toenails. At least in Ethiopia they do. Enjoy the people there!

  2. Thanks for your comment on my blog, Phil.

    Just curious — what organization are you working through for this trip? I don’t remember if you mentioned that in an earlier post.

  3. D. Stevenson

    Wow. Ten days. You’ll barely have time to get past jet lag. Yes, exaggeration…, still, sounds like you will be busy with all you hope to accomplish there.

    I definitely identify with the flexibility thing. I am leaving the continent this summer for the first time in 30 years. I have become quite fond of fans and warm running water, along with other comforts of American life.

  4. Amy

    I have you have a wonderful, wonderful trip and get to see elephants and lions as a side benefit to the good work you are doing!

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