Guest post by Sandra Basgall, Catholic Relief Services Central Africa
Kinshasa, the capital of the Democratic Republic of Congo, is a
bustling city of 8 to 10 million on the Congo River. Across the river lies
the capital of the Republic of Congo, Brazzaville. This is the only
place in the world where two capitals lie side by side.
locations, you can see Brazzaville, just as large and busy as Kinshasa.
There are no bridges connecting the two cities. Many people cross by
speed boat and others on the overcrowded ferries. You need a visa to
Many of the boulevards in Kinshasa are very wide, but
traffic is heavy, and during rush hour, the buses and taxis race each
other to get the next passenger. These yellow and blue vehicles defy
description. Some of them look like vans or old delivery trucks with windows cut out of the sides. People hold the doors closed
by just hanging on to them. They are full, full, full of people and
remind me of the old ‘70s game of seeing how many people can fit into a
Many look like they can barely move, but my colleagues tell
me that just a month ago, the worst of them were taken off the road. I
can barely imagine what they looked like as this bunch is so
rag-a-tagged. We have been told not to use buses or taxis as they are
not safe mechanically and you might get robbed. I have no desire to
ride in one.
Definitely bad business for United, possibly even worse than their recent lost-luggage double whammy on the musician whose "United Breaks Guitars" video went viral.
Travel blog Gadling reports that United revoked the first-class upgrade of a passenger traveling in a track suit. Oops! That passenger was an articulate, otherwise very well-groomed Best Buy vice president and frequent flyer. Watch the video for yourself.