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Hasta luego Lima

8 November 2007

MRG’s Fundraising Coordinator, Cecile Clerc rubs shoulders with Peru’s sporting VIPs and says a fond farewell to Lima.

Here we are: my suitcase is packed and we’ve booked the taxi to take us to the airport later today. We actually should not have come back to the craft market for a last walk around… Samia and I have now huge and very heavy suitcases, full of surprises for our friends, family and colleagues. Hopefully, on this side of the world, they will be a bit more relaxed with baggage allowance.

It’s now time for my last impressions. You must have guessed from my previous postings that I’ve had a fascinating time in Lima. I especially liked meeting with our partners and participating in the discussions on the content of the work we will be jointly undertaking. I feel I’ve gained a real grasp of the Afro-descendants project which I hope will reflect in the funding applications I’ll be writing in the future. Having joined MRG not so long ago, it was also my first opportunity to see the work of my organization on the ground. I have to say, I’m very proud of what we all do.

The human dimension to this trip was also very intense: spending a day with Afro-descendant communities in El Carmen and listening to their personal stories of racism, discrimination but also of hope and motivation to overcome challenges, was truly inspirational.

And then, any such trips are full of anecdotes. I never mentioned for instance that we stayed in the same hotel as a very famous Peruvian football team and had a chance to shake the hand of one of the players – the most famous one according to some of our female partners.

The US Junior Judo team was also staying at our hotel. While we were discussing serious issues related to our project, they were preparing for their competition in the room next door. We could hear them screaming and falling on the tatami on a regular basis.

Samia and I became experts in negotiating the fares of our taxi rides – we started at 12 soles for the trip between Miraflores, where most donors have their offices – and the hotel and paid 5 soles today.

We’re not scared of the traffic anymore and are now able to keep our eyes open during a whole taxi journey…

But I’ll stop boring you all to death. From tomorrow I’ll be back at my desk and carrying on with my Fundraising life. And I will upload my photo on Facebook…

This article reflects the sole opinion of its author and does not engage MRG’s responsibility.