I spent the last few days in Niamey and then traveling back to Maradi. While the 9-10 hour ride from Niamey to Maradi is really interesting, it’s tiring as well. It’s a two lane road that is always busy with people, bikers, donkeys and carts, semi trucks, buses and other vehicles – not to mention the variety of animals that are standing on or crossing the road. There are speed bumps at every village you come to and a large portion of the road is full of potholes or non-existent. As my good friends like to say, it’s always a lark!
While I was still in Niamey, I had the opportunity to visit Hannatou. I stayed with Hannatou and her family for nearly a year when I lived in Niger, and we have been good friends ever since. During this visit, I met a woman who has to go for dialysis twice a week because her kidneys have shut down. I cannot imagine having to do this treatment in Niger. Aichatou is about 50 years old and her family lives in city that’s 12 hours east of Niamey. The only dialysis center in Niger is in Niamey. Fortunately, Hannatou has opened her home to her so she is able to get the treatment she needs. I just don’t know what will happen to her. I guess she will have to continue with the dialysis for the rest of her life since there’s no possibility of a kidney transplant in Niger. It’s really heartbreaking.
On a more positive note, I’m going to visit the Zinder primary school later this week. I’m eager to see how the construction of the new school building is coming along, as well as observe some classes in the new computer lab we installed in August. The new school building will make room for three more classes, which means that over one hundred more students will get to go to school!