Celebrating East African Writing!
Life is interesting! About two weeks ago, I landed at Heathrow Airport in London without an idea of where I was going; all I had were directions, Google maps and my suitcase. I did not know anyone, neither did I know what life would look like for the next couple of days. Today, I was almost in tears when my new Colombian friend, a stranger to me a few days ago, left on her way back home. Two weeks ago, I did not know anyone here, but today, my mind is filled with the faces, names and beautiful memories of tens of people that I have met during my trip to the Hay Festival.
It was a great pleasure for me to be a part of the festival team this year. The team here at Hay is amazing. They are very warm and welcoming, an attribute that enabled me to warm up quickly to everyone and the tasks at hand. Everyone was very helpful in helping me learn the ropes, despite the immense pressure on their time. A second positive attitude is their great sense of professionalism and hard work. Each member of the team is not afraid to put in long hours into their work and still deliver it in world-class standards. The resounding comment from most of the speakers I encountered was their great appreciation with how the festival team handled them and the festival.
The people of Hay are also amazing. They are very kind and warm. They often saluted me as we met on the streets or in the shops in the town. The shopkeepers met me with big smiles that contrasted with the customer care that I have recently been complaining about back home. This contributed to my quick settling into Hay-on-Wye.
The festival was overly informative and exciting. I got to see, hear and shake hands with people I had once only dreamed of meeting. As a publisher, I interacted and met with several publishers´ who were there to escort their authors to the venue. As I sit here I´m trying to mentally pack my suitcase thinking of the number of books I have acquired in my short time here.
All in all, I count myself really privileged to have been a part of the festival this year. The memories, lessons and photos will remain with me for a lifetime. And if God permits, I wouldn’t hesitate coming back again!