“Welcome to the Motel Rwanda…Such a lovely place, such a lovely face…They livin’ it up in the Motel Rwanda…What a nice surprise, bring your alibis”
With apologies to The Eagles, once we left the airport we were driven by our contact to our temporary resting place. One of us had found this hidden treasure trove while scouring the Internet for potential abodes. As we pulled out of the airport we noticed the barbed wire propped up at the airport gate. This elicited some raised eyebrows, but it was only a taste of things to come. Driving from the airport to our final destination in Kigali we were able to see quite a bit of the city as a variety of buildings and shanty towns littered the hillside and the valleys. The one thing that we noticed was how packed the streets were with people, mopeds, dirt bikes, diesel trucks, taxi vans and what amounted to a used car lot owner’s delight.
We arrived at the motel/hotel and checked our bags in and saw our rooms. For two rooms it is running us $33 per person, per night. If you do the math it’s over $1000 per person per month. It’s not ideal – there is no air conditioner in the rooms, no kitchen, no refrigerator, but it provides basic necessities and it is located in a secure area. While we don’t have air conditioning we are provided with fashionable mosquito nets over each bed, in addition to a shower without a curtain, which makes for an adventure in not completely dousing the floor.
One of the bigger problems is the intermittent power outages that occur. That happened today before I was going to take a shower. Guess who had no hot water. Let’s just say both of my co-travelers reveled in listening to me reacting to the freezing cold water. Also, while there is no train in the vicinity of where we are staying there must be a ghost train that travels right outside at varying hours of the day and night. We also have small lizards on the walls at night and some unknown animal that roams the tin roofing. Our initial impression was that a cat was the likely culprit, but we haven’t seen one since arriving here. We put our money on a monkey.
The workers are nice and polite and speak some English. Also, we are served an awesome breakfast in the morning. Needless to say we stock up on this and eat our fair share since it’s already priced in.
The grounds are well kept and are quite pretty. There are two sitting areas in the back which we have utilized. If it wasn’t for the price and the air conditioner it’d be a better deal.
In future posts I’ll elaborate on our search for a future location, in addition to our other travels and misadventures.