Part One

While few came to this heavenly place known as Kamaria (like the moon) the villages around feared it because it was said that that was where Chechwa (the devil) rears its ugly face. Here, at the Balongwe Bridge, in the center of the Nkola (the Forest tribe) and Geruto (the mountain tribe) villages, lay the pathway to spiritual enlightenment.

My time had come to finally take this path. With eighty-seven years of age, you could say I have seen it all. Yes, I have seen it all, all except my grace.

I came from a mother whose beauty was revered throughout the lands and a father who had the strength of ten cows. But when I emerged from the heavens with the mark on my hip, it was taken with much surprise that I, Balinda would take the path of Ismitta (Daughters of the mountains of the moon).

I would have to abandon all things of this world as well as my family and embark on a journey to find the home of Queens.

Mother cried for days and father simply looked at me as if I was dead. They knew that when the moon and the sun met on the ninth year of my entrance, they would not only have to say their goodbyes but that that would be the last time they would ever see me again.

The years passed and my parents did all they could to teach me the ways of our ancestors and when the time was ripe, the darkness woke me up when the moon was high and she led me out into the path.

On my journey I met great elders, medicine men, I even sat with highest known spiritual leaders throughout the lands. I loved some, hated others and as the fog began to form around me and the stream became glass, a shadow began to form.

It was Chechwa and it looked like me.



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