Other Volunteers Stories

I thought I’d share with you a collection of stories that did not happen to me. These are the stories we tell each other when we are together, When we try to one-up eachother on things that are more absurd, or representative of Rwanda or Africa. I’ll put them in the first person, but ones that actually happened to me have a star.

Someone had their compost pile stolen from their yard –presumably by someone who used it on their own crops.

On a bus once a volunteer was sitting next to a women who, every time she took her ear buds out to answer the phone, picked them up and put them in her own ears.

A volunteer was once on a bus when  a women next to him very discreetly gave birth to a baby, and the bus naturally had to take a detour to a nearby hospital.

A volunteer who has several facial piercings was told by her students that she should take them out because they are science students and they know that this can cause cancer.

I was on a motorcycle taxi that got a flat tire. When we stopped in the next village to find someone with a pump a midget emerged from the local bar with a soccer ball pump to help us.

A volunteer was riding her bike through her village, when so many children chased after her and grabbed onto the bike that she crashed.

A volunteer went to a wedding in her village with some co-workers and simply because she was white was asked to make a speech.

Every health volunteer seems to have watched multiple births.

One Education volunteer got her high school students to write and perform their own musical – a widely admired feat.

Children broke my window trying to reach their hands in to steal things from my kitchen.

A volunteer was on a moto that hit and killed a goat and had to spend a very long time arguing with its owner and the driver about who should have to pay for the goat  - it is traditional that if you kill someone elses goat you must reimburse them for it.

One volunteer tried to use Dr. Suess’s “The Lorax” to teach his students about conservation. Afterwards he asked how the problem could be solved and every student answered that they should kill the Lorax. Not exactly the message he was going for.