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Colors of the Kivus

Goma & Bukavu 2004 | Brown-red dirt roads, white flowers, pink bandanas, an orange kanga with its patterns and patches, the bright blue of buildings with official or social functions. Almost overwhelming, the colors of the Kivus. They actually feel more intense than the climate conditions. It is as if my body had been deprived of color for a long time and suddenly is soaked in it.

It is a work-related trip, in fact, relatively early on during my stay in Congo. Most photos are taken during visits of projects or authorities. A school and a bridge are being inaugurated, a maternity and a dispensary visited and challenges discussed. A micro-credit association is showing its most successfully supported local businesses, a local police station demonstrating its new equipment, and strategies being devised in the major’s office.

While my boss, a well-tempered and middle-aged lady from Burkina Faso, is shaking hands with local dignitaries, i manage to steel away for some minutes here and there to see the surroundings, feeling strangely at home and enjoying what a colleague recently described as the “immediacy of human interaction”. And the amazing colors.

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