July 30, 2008  

We  start the day at 8:30 with most of the participants already in place.  Songs, prayers, secretary’s report of the preceding day.  This report went on for 30 minutes recounting in detail, all that went on yesterday including a repeat of all the tribal marriage and divorce customs we had talked about.  All participants seem intent on their own notes comparing them with the secretary’s report. 

The report is called Les Journalistes.   This entails a recounting of the national Congolese news as reported on the radio.  It is given with enthusiasm and gusto, particularly recounting a trial of an assassin who knocked off a deputy governor somewhere in the country.    Heads nod and accord  is given by soft murmurs of the participants.

On the list goes:

  1. Death of Papa Mwembo, King of Congolese rhumba at 82 years. 
  2. Census on rape conducted throughout the Congo.  The Eastern provinces are the worst.
  3. 84 transformers delivered to Kinshasa
  4. Death of comedian, Bongo
  5. Equatorial province,  a ferry sinks with numerous deaths.
  6. Lubumbashi,  governor visits Chinese installation of a asphalt factory.
  7. And governor will attempt to stop a counterfeiting ring of US dollars. 
  8. At Bukavu a recycling factory for plastic will soon be opened.
  9. Also there will be a visit from Koreans interested in starting a mango factory.

After the course finished today, I went on a walk down to the town, again with Guillaume, but no one followed us this time.

We went to the market I had seen on the river bank,  Mulongwe R. market.  There were thousands of people there selling food, clothing and basic necessities.  Of course I was quite evident , but people were open and outgoing.  One man offered to sell me some pig mammary glands.  I asked if they were meant for men or women. He said, “pour tous”  for everyone.  They looked overcooke, so I wasn’t interested.  

Huge numbers of children and pregnant women.  Some of them probably rape victims in this part of the world.  We passed a center for these women and orphans.  I saw a little boy with a badly burned hand, probably a cooking accident.  It was on the back of the hand and he was carrying it up and away from his body so as not to rub it.   He wasn’t trying to show me. It just was there inview.  NO dressing on it.  Maybe it was already healed. I couldn’t tell.

At numerous points people sold gasoline from one liter bottles.  Probably it was for the moto taxis.  The local name for these little gas stations is Qaddafi’s after Mummar Qaddafi, the leader of Libya.

Gladness, the Banyamulenge man who wants some mediation seminars to be given in his area,  tells me that his farm terrain is mountainous and butts up against a forest that has chimpanzees.  There is also a gold bearing stream on his property.  No hotels or guest houses in the area but there is a large catholic church where one could probably stay and hold a seminar.  Any takers?


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July 30, 2008
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