Ok a little while ago I spoke of a secret trip I was planning this year. At least one of you (thank you Marcie) was curious to where I was going. I didn’t want to tempt fate, so have kept quiet about it. Foolishly a couple of years ago I blurted I was going to Brazil and it all fell through (I’m still to make my way to Brazil) so I’m cautious.
But my invite is in my hand, my flights are booked and now I think I’m as sure as I will ever be of going. So where is it? I’ve been lucky enough to cover lots of central and south America. For a new traveler like me its been a wonderful experience but the jet lag and having to go through the US each time (travelers are you hearing me or what) have meant each trip has become harder. So this time no US and no jet lag. I’m off to Africa for the first time in my life.
To be precise I’m off to Rwanda to be part of the jury for the first Cup of Excellence to be ever held out side on Central and South America. Like the people at the very beginning of the competition I’m excited about the possibilities the COE can bring to a new continent and to Africa as a whole. I’m also pleased due to my involment with the board of Directors, I know how much work it has been for the management team to overcome the new challenges something like this can bring.
I’ve been doing my research on Rwanda and I think its going to be an emotional journey for lots of reasons. Anyone who has looked into the genocide, and the remarkable way the whole country has picked itself up forgiven and moved on. Its also sad how the world let the country don at there time of need. I’m currently reading a book all about it and have re watched Hotel Rwanda. I’ve also watched a less famous film called Shooting Dogs, staring John Hurt which I found incredibly touching and moving. I know they are films but it really helps to visualize what happened (with a slight hollywood hero slant). I also spent some time in Copenhagen chatting to someone who works in Rwanda to find out more. Everyone I talk to about it who has been tells me it will change my life.
We also sponsor an under 14’s football team there, I’ve no idea how close or far it is from where we will be, but I really hope I’m able to meet up with them and have a kick around.
so the count down begins.