A skyline that is usually dominated by the distinctive volcanic outline of Nyiragongo, whose active crater often belches out smoke by day and glows ominously at night.
I saw that of all the African cultural practices, only music, dance and religion – immaterial arts – were preserved and reinvested with the power to bring people together.
Here I am, seated next to a Burundian who is new on this route and only knows where he is getting off, a bus that is really moving, an undecided battle between the rain and sunshine outside, and a racing heart…
Her Kinyarwanda is musical; this I hear as she calls out for the 7-month old crocodile at the backyard pond, almost like a girl playing with a doll.
Its spire rises above almost all else. Perched atop one of its approaching hills, the spire is a landmark that one would hardly miss from most areas surrounding the main road into Muhanga.
He speaks Kinyarwanda, Kiswahili and English to me; all at different times. He prods asking why I’m interested in Rebero and other follow up questions to his reflexive statement, “You are not allowed here.”
The gallery is built along a hill slope, requiring one to descend a flight of very steep stairs. As if in an effort to distract from the descent, sculptures adorn the side of the stairway wall.
At the reception we meet a couple of beautiful young mushanana-adorning guides laughing at a joke that’s been in the air for quite a bit, their smiles slightly waning.
Kibeho is as dusty as the road leading to it, but covered by a hum of activity as motos and buses pick and drop travelers. At the Kibeho Shrine I see a lonesome piano, silent as the air around it, still and sort of waiting on something.
Up there, on top of all these tall trees, surrounded by one of the purest airs on this planet, one feels a certain kinship to the earth – a sort of tug at your being, and thoughts of time and how fleeting the human endeavour is sometimes.