fauxklore (fauxklore) wrote,

C'est Si Bon(e)

I made it fine to Madagascar. The hotel in Antananarivo was very good; the one in Antsirabe is less good, but has an excellent restaurant.

The roads are bad, the food is good, and the weather is hot during the day and quite cold at night (i.e. I need to sleep wearing sweats under 2 blankets and a quilt_. Tomorrow, I am off to a place that is said to be the hottest in the country, so maybe that won't be the case there. (I do have a sleeping bag with me and could always add that if need be).

I am enjoying the usual sensory overload of third world travel. Two of my travel rules have been validated: 1) always go to local festivals and 2) English speaking guides in Francophone Africa aren't. (Just because English is an official language of Madagascar, doesn't mean anybody speaks much of it.)

As for the first of those rules, the famadihana I went to yesterday was pretty amazing. This is a family festival that involves "turning the bones," i.e. disinterring bodies from a tomb, wrapping them in new shrouds, and reinterring them. I was rather relieved that the old shrouds are not removed. There was a lot of music and dancing (and drinking - but that I don't do so much) involved. There is usually some point in a trip where I say it was worth the expense, but it is not often on the 3rd day.

I am heading west tomorrow and beginning a descent of the Tsirbihina River the day after, so should start seeing some lemurs on Monday-ish. I will definitely not have internet access during the 3 days of the cruise. If there is any access in Belo sur Tsirbihina, I will write from there, but if not it will wait for Morondova in 2 weeks.
Tags: travel

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