Sunday, December 7, 2008

Christmas Bazaar

On Sunday after church, Rob, Brenna, and I walked a little over a mile downtown to the market. Brenna was interested in getting a nativity scene, or crèche de Noel, like ours and we decided to take her to see our friend Jean Baptiste who had sold us ours the week before. When we arrived, we discovered many of the vendors closed and to our dismay jean baptiste was nowhere to be seen. I asked his next door neighbor where he was and he said that there was a festival and he was selling his wares there. A festival! Where? And we were soon on our way after mixing bits of English, French, and Kinyarwanda to get directions. More than slightly unsure of exactly where we were headed or if we would even make it anywhere at all, our adventure began. We decided it was definitely worth a try and it was a nice day for a long walk. A long walk later, smattered with landmarks our guide had given here and there, we stumbled upon an unusual number of mzungus coming out of a church's compound. This must be it. As we entered we discovered a fantastic site. It reminded me of a fall festival. The fellowship hall had been leased by an aid organization which brought in local artisans to sell the wares to shoppers eager to bring home Christmas treasures for their families. It was converted in to a market feel and filled to capacity with merchants and shoppers. There were books for sell, jewelry, table linens, baskets, and Rwandans own first chocolatier! We found Jean Baptiste among all the hustle and bustle; he remembered us and was overjoyed that we had brought him more business. Christmas music playing in the background mingled with the sounds of children playing games outside as the smell of the grill wafted indoors and Christmas goodies pleasured the eyes. It was wonderful and festive. Such an unexpected treat fondly reminding me and Rob of the Christmas season we're missing back home.

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