Much as the “gusaba” (introduction) function is elaborate and taxing, I have never been to one where the groom is denied a bride, save for the antics here and there, it always ends up positively.
Having concluded the gusaba function so successfully, we were hosted to a grand luncheon, not the likes of Kigali but with the real Village food! The ‘umunyige’ (mashed banana) was second to none; what about the cassava; the taste was superb! All the food was quite fresh and tasty. Since we had accomplished what had brought us all the way across the mighty Muvumba River, it was now time for us to head back to our village withour ‘mugeni’ (bride).
We or rather our team leader thanked the hosts and bid them farewell as we hit the road back to Matimba. Despite thedistance from Nyagatare to Matimba being about fifty kilometres, we took about half an hour to cover it.
We were racing against time and nature.The sky was beginning to show signs of weariness and we did not want to get caught up in the rain before thepartybegan! The convoy stopped at Mushere church and the Priest was already ready to commence with the sentencing of the two lover birds to imprisonment to life without any prospects of parole.
As usual, he uttered the normal stuff, ‘John, are you willing to take Mary as your lawfully wedded wife, to love to cherish, in good and bad, till death does you apart’? The man replied ‘I do’.
He turned to the lady, ‘Mary, are you willing to take John as your lawfully wedded husband, to love to cherish, in good and bad, till death does you apart’? The lady replied,
‘I do’. ‘I now pronounce you as husband and wife, what God has put together, let no man set asunder.’ The crowd roared with joy and happiness. I think he left out the part that says ‘now, may the groom kiss the bride’! The rest was just formalities, in earnest, the wedding was concluded! We had to go through the rest of the mass and thereafter rushed to the home for the start of the partying!
Unlike in Kigali, where nearly all the newly wedded couples go to the MTN (KBC) round about for their photos, here, there was none, we had to pause just in front of some beautiful green bushes for the background and the nice undulating hills in the background did the magic.
The shots were more than perfect thanks to the village! By this time, the skies were beginning to lose all forms of shyness, they were fast turning grey.
The troupe was fast shered into their tent, more snaps taken and then the usual routine and protocol observed. As it was threatening to rain, it was decided that, the wedding cake be cut as fast as possible and then all the other functions were fast tracked.
Dinner was served followed by the usual milk. No sooner had the dinner ended than the heavens opened and the rains began to pour as if they were competing in the world cup!
It rained for about two hours and by the time it stopped; the whole place was very cold. I was amazed to see a big group of old men sitting on a bench on the veranda quite oblivious of the rains and cold. These
guys were busy singing and rhyming their music. They were enjoying some drinks from improvised mineral water bottles. Needless to say, beers
like Eagle, Turbo King, J&B, etc were all flowing in full effect.
By the time it clocked midnight, it was as if it had never rained in the first place. People were busy dancing to a Disco of a sort; others were drumming and so on and so forth. This was a mother of all weddings.
We were forced to stay overnight. By the time we woke up the next morning, the partying was still on. We had to leave in the afternoon of Sunday as some of us had to prepare for Monday morning.