Adventure and Bone-Rattling Roads...
We were delighted to land back safely at ORTambo after an exciting but bone-rattling time in Madagascar.
Our trip to Madagascar was really nothing like we expected and more than we believed possible. We had adventures every day, interacted with creatures that were prehistoric and absorbed culture and stories continuously.
We met locals who became guides and companions, enjoyed food that was well displayed on the plate and not always as tasty as it looked. Ate fresh, crisp vegetables and fruit at almost every meal.
Our drivers could rival Roof of Africa rally drivers and I often put myself into ‘coma mode’ to avoid looking out of the window at the near misses we experienced. (Not possible to read or do handwork as the 4x4 veered from left to right at what seemed alarming speeds).
We met foreigners who became best friends and baby lemurs which we wanted to bring home.
My school-girl French rescued us from many sticky moments and I invented a new language ‘MalaFranish’ to get us through the days with much laughter. David was even heard to utter a faint ‘merci’ although he could have been muttering ‘mercy’.
We stayed in mosquito infested rooms with little or no hot water in the showers, ‘English style’ tents - canvas covering with mattresses on the floor and ‘outside private ablutions’. We levitated on dodgy linen and ‘rocks’ for pillows. We dipped our toes in the sea and strolled beaches with goats.
We paddled down rivers to explore caves and the tombs of ancestors.
We crossed rivers on pontoons made of wood balanced on two steel canoes tied by rope.
We hiked into (and out of) forests in search of lemurs and chameleons.
We wandered through some villages where people only eat a bowl of rice a day and the women scratch a living crushing rocks or selling Malagasy rice cakes. We saw grey-faced children calling for ‘bon-bons’ who made cars out of plastic bottles and still managed to smile.
We avoided the very real threat of the plague (which locals feel is a political ploy), passed garbage piled years high near waterways. Watched rice fields being planted and hugged trees of well over 1000 years old. We danced with lemurs and marveled at non-poisonous snakes. We ended most days with a heart-lifting sunset and woke each morning to another adventure.
Thank you to all of you for your kind thoughts, concern and interest. We so appreciate it. There really is nothing like ‘home’ is there?
Remember attitude is the difference between an ordeal and an adventure....So where should we explore next?
All good wishes