It is 5.20 am.
This is the time I usually wake up, even on Sundays.
I get out of bed, put on my sports clothes and get out quietly, to avoid waking up anyone.
I walk towards the rising sun and start to run towards it.
I wait until the day reveals itself and the tone or the colour of the day is given to me…
It’s a ritual, I love rituals. From my earliest childhood on. Since the traditional evenings, the artists’ shows in the refugee camps…
That summer, I was at my grandmother’s and my friend’s in Kigali. More precisely in Remera.
The neighbourhood is calm and warm. People are nice, and whatever mood you get up in the morning, your smile catches up with you, because so many greetings, good day wishes and other pleasantries are sown along your path before arriving at the top of the hill.
That morning, the smell of the surrounding kitchen is so strong that it stops me from running.
I’m looking for the scent of the gaze, which is absurd, you will agree, and I realise that it emanates from the neighbouring house.
Internally, I vociferated against the housewife who dares to prepare red beans and cassava leaves so early in the morning.
I come back home quite mad, I take a shower and swallow my fruit with no real appetite.
The next day, the same scent greets me out of the house.
I choose not to let my morning peace be disturbed and head for the next house.
I push the gate and from a distance I see the silhouette of Suzanne, our neighbour.
I know that she lives alone now, that her husband and children have been killed during the genocide.