The mysterious growing stone of Embu
For a long time, nature has been a source of curiosity and mystery.
One such mystery is the Kaguma boulder, as it is commonly known in Gichera Village, which ancestors once termed as the ‘growing stone’ due to its transformation in size over the years.
Located about 15 kilometers from Runyenjes Sub County in Embu, Kaguma boulder has stunned many people with the stages that ancestors prophesied it would undergo.
The boulder sits on a one-acre piece of land that belongs to an 82-year-old widow, Ekire Igandu, who inherited the land from her husband, but it’s the only piece of land in that area that has rocks while the surrounding areas are farms.
Ekire Igandu narrates that the boulder grew from the ground, and that she together with other women used to dry and sift millet in the area in the 80s, and by then one would could sit on it as it was barely one metre high, but that has changed over the years.
Igandu explains that Mwenda Mwea, an Embu community’s widely known prophet, prophesied that one day the great rock on her farm will uproot itself, drop down hill and plant itself three kilometers from where it is at Matururi plains.
She said that she believes Mwenda Mwea’s prophecy has come to pass because the area where it was to land schools have been put up and several homes constructed with stone obtained from the boulder.
The elderly woman, who is a mother of eight, says that the rock is hers’, despite some people saying that nobody owns the rock and that is the reason she has never ordered it fractured.
Igandu says that many people have tried to buy it but she refused, saying that the rock is in her ancestral farm and it is a taboo in her community to sell something you inherited.
She says that the boulder has attracted many tourists from different parts of the world to Gichera village where it is located.
Robert Ruia, who has lived close to the boulder for almost 50 years, said that Kaguma has attracted many visitors including school children who visit the place to see the growing rock and take panoramic pictures of Embu Town.
He added that the boulder has been used by village elders as a shrine to pray for rain, claiming that some of the recent prayers were successful.
Benson Ndwiga, another resident, said they decided to construct a ladder for anyone wishing to get to the top of the rock to replace the old method of pulling people up using ropes which they say was tedious.
Ndwiga, who is in line to inherit the piece of land, says he charges Sh50 to help tourists climb the boulder.
Another beneficiary is a bodaboda operator, Anthony Gitonga, who said the boulder has provided him and other young men in the area with employment; he ferries tourists to and from the site.
They say that no accident has ever been reported at the site.
Some residents told Citizen Digital that the prophecies have already been fulfilled, but several tales still exist explaining why the boulder has not yet been exploited, and why rocks are only found in one piece of land in the area.
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