Our Beginning

This picture was taken when we went to visit our grandmother in shaggz, aka ushago, kwa cucu...in other words, where our story begins. These are the roots of the mugumo tree that sits on my grandmother's compound. A quick history lesson on this tree according to our cucu revealed that the tree has stood in place even before the colonists came along! Mind you, the colonists came along in the 1800s! The Mugumo tree is integral to the Kikuyu creation myth and was also used by the Kenyan Mau Mau movement as a mailbox to safely exchange messages during their days of liberation struggle. It was declared a national monument in Kenya in 2010. And this tree sits quietly on my grandmother's compound. If only trees could speak, the stories this tree would tell....Talk about history in your own back yard!

It is a tree drenched with symbolism and  to me, it represents the notion of Asili, a swahili word that means ancestry, foundation and beginning. Where our story begins..

Yvonne Kamau