“If you eat ice cream, it’s OK, you are enjoying your life. You are not scared of the others for taking something you know you want.” ～Louise Ingabire, manager of Rwanda’s first ice cream shop.
I love ice cream. Not only for the taste, the process, but now also for the potential it has for making a difference in someone’s life. I came across this article on the NPR website about Rwanda’s only ice cream shop, Sweet Dreams, a shop founded by a Rwandan artist, and an American ice cream proprietor from Brooklyn, named Alexis Miesen.
This article really opened my eyes up to the reality that the very things that I take for granted, are fought for and then cherished in other parts of the world. Their experience has been made into a documentary titled, “Sweet Dreams,” and you can see the official trailer here:
I found the story to be so inspiring that I had to share it with everyone. If you have a chance to see the documentary, I would love to hear your thoughts! (I’ll be ordering it on Amazon, as soon as I can)
最近看了 NPR (National Public Radio) 的一個報道有關盧安達第一間冰淇淋店真的是感觸很多。在盧安達冰淇淋是一個多層面的享受～不只是一個甜點～而代表著人的 勇氣，意志及毅力。 這個報道讓我體會到了許多平常想不到的困難，也放大了我覺得理所當然的快樂。
From the article:
In a country where traditional drummers are exclusively male, the women started a female drumming troupe. The troupe had extra symbolism after the genocide of 1994.
Some of the drummers were the wives of killers now in prison. Other women were widows and survivors. They toured the country, promoting reconciliation and challenging the traditional role of women in Rwandan society.
The ice cream shop was supposed to be a way to give some of the women more stable incomes. But selling ice cream turned out to face an even more tenacious taboo: In Rwanda, its highly unseemly to eat anything in the street.
That ruled out ice cream carts and ice cream stands.
It’s hard to unpack this particular taboo. But Rwandan culture discourages the public display of personal needs. Not just hunger but also grief. Tears are acceptable only in specific mourning periods.
Some say that Rwandans’ capacity to put a public mask on sadness is what’s held the country together, allowed killers and survivors to remain neighbors for the past 20 years.
Louise Ingabire is the manager of the ice cream shop. “When ice cream comes,” she says, “we would like to change the culture.”
She says getting Rwandans to eat ice cream is more than just a business venture. It’s bringing them in touch with their inner selves.
“If you eat ice cream, it’s OK, you are enjoying your life. You are not scared of the others for taking something you know you want.”
開店的過程有拍成一部紀錄片 “Sweet Dreams” 可能在台灣不會上映， 可是我一定會買DVD 來看的
Enjoy! (and be inspired!)