I bless the rains down in Africa!
October 14, 2010

Toto’s lyrics came to mind today. The short rainy season is now well and truly with us. The temperature has dropped slightly, although it’s still short sleeve weather for muzungus and the only need for a sweater is to keep out the mosquitoes during the evening.   

Luckily, so far, I’ve managed to avoid a real drenching. Earlier this week I set out for Nyabitare School in bright sunshine but as we headed over the hills, the dark storm clouds gathered and my motorbike helmet visor was being spattered with the first drops of rain as I arrived about two minutes ahead of an absolute deluge.

It’s final revision week in schools with the end of year exams starting next Monday so they are all very busy. The children finish at the end of October but the teachers are required in school throughout November and December for in service training.

This week I’ve been doing some school development planning with my two head teachers which involved translating their existing long-term strategic plans for 2010-2012 from French into English! Actually it wasn’t as difficult as I thought it might be.

Today I was working at ‘home’ mulling over some ideas for forthcoming workshops on lesson planning and creating an effective classroom environment when I heard the first ominous rolls of thunder accompanied by distant flashes of lightning. Within a few minutes the sky had darkened, the wind was whipping up the red dust and buffeting the surrounding trees, bending the banana plants almost double.

Then the heavens opened, the rain hammered on the corrugated metal roof, cascading into the concrete gully that surrounds the house sending blood-red rivulets spilling across the open ground. The torrent  lasted for about 15 minutes and then it stopped as suddenly as it had begun.

That is pretty much the pattern of things at the moment, but the rain is obviously much-needed in this, the driest corner of Rwanda.