26 Dec

I spent my first two days in Nyamasheke resting at the heavenly Kumbya Retreat Center. On the third day, I was re-energized and ready to spin my spokes across the remaining nine districts. When the tour resumed, I headed to Rusizi. However, before I left, I deviated from the highway and twisted the throttle towards a village known as Murwa.

Until 1973, Murwa was an island. It was separated from the mainland by the shallow waters of the area known as Mujabagiro, within Kagano Sector. 

"We used to walk to and from the other side through Mujabagiro while navigating the depth ranging from knee to waist levels, depending on one's height." Hakizimana Lawrence, a resident of Murwa, told me. "I was a strong young man. I remember carrying people on my shoulders, helping them to traverse the Mujabagiro barrier without getting wet." He added. 

As hinted above, Murwa was connected to the mainland in 1973. This happened when a dry path was built. The project, which separated water like the rod of Moses, is the reason we can drive straight to Murwa today. 

On my way to Murwa, I looked at the narrow mujabagiro entry point and imagined how things used to be. Part of me wished the village was still an island, but I also recognized the need to remove the old logistical hurdle.

Murwa is a beautiful peninsula, surrounded by equally attractive geographical features. While exploring the village, I couldn't stop marveling at the neighboring Nyabitekeri Peninsula and Idjwi Island.