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My hotel room has a tiny TV that I keep thinking is more for decoration than for anything else. Last night I finally managed to turn it on after several (pathetic) attempts. Mmm…let’s see, there was some sort of French documentary, a Rwandese news channel and on the last available channel…mmm….Berlusconi?! Yes, Berlusconi. Being Italian it was probably the last thing I was expecting or wanted to see. I took it as a sign, turned the TV off and opened my much more interesting book.
Tonight I decided to have a quick dinner in my hotel to then catch up on emails. I had promised myself I would be careful this time, indeed here each portion will most likely fulfill your weekly carbohydrate needs.
“You speak Kinyarwanda?” A voice interrupts my thoughts. I turn and sitting by himself there is this lovely Rwandese old man. “Amakuru?!” I try to answer with one of the two words I know hoping to impress him but once he starts laughing I clearly get that I failed. Somehow we start talking; he speaks French, I speak English and we probably talk for an entire hour absolutely unaware of what the other person is saying. In the meantime the waitress has also come to take my order. Right when I realise I should probably stop talking to grandpa who is still fluently speaking to me in French, comes the unexpected. “Berlusconi, Berlusconi! He likes girls! I hear it on the radio!”. It was one of those moments when everything suddenly slows down and you think “This is not happening, it’s just in my head, it must be the malarone pills.” I would like to take a minute and remark that I am in Rwanda, and that grandpa did not speak a word of English up until then!
I am still confused and trying to process his words when my wake-up call suddenly comes in. Two, not even one, TWO gigantic plates of food. Damn it, I did it again.
Marta, UK Office
Tracking chimpanzees in their natural habitat, as they swing from the branches in the canopy high above the forest floor is nothing short of exhilarating. The chimps effortlessly cross and scamper through the trees above the gorge, and visitors on the other hand must cross the river using natural bridges in order to keep up with the chimps. So although the walk usually lasts only 2–3 hours, descending the steep gorge and crossing the log bridges over the river requires some agility and fitness.
Chimpanzee tracking is also available in nearby Kalinzu, a forest reserve 30 minutes drive from Kyambura Gorge Lodge where there is a community of about 40 habituated chimpanzees.