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Road Trip: Day 1

4th January 2011

rain 20 °C

We altered our itinerary and decided to get long drives out of the way first, which meant today entailed a 7 hour drive from Antananarivo to Fianarantsoa. It was spectacular. I can’t quite compare it to anything in particular, but I get blended reminders of Mpumalanga, Rice-paddy-rich and rural Asia, Tuscany, and speckled bits of certain bits of the Western Cape.

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Fano organised us a fabulous driver, Zina. He is brilliant, informative and very chilled. We are also in a perfect car for 4 people- A Hyundai van (Jetstar) of some sorts. We all have ample space, including the alcohol and boxes of snacks that we familiarly bought from Shoprite in Antsirabe.

I’m not too sure how to describe it all…

I just know that I am stupidly glad today was chilly with persistent Cape Town-like rain.

I have a thought. Liz Gilbert divided a specific period of her life into 3 phases: Eat, Pray, and Love. I think a world of women has identified with what she wrote and how she described and worked through her own grief. I think what is missing, is silence. Obviously praying, in Liz Gilbert’s sense, involves reflection, introspection and silence, but I like to consider silence without feeling like I should get something out of it, like it has this goal I’m meant to try and achieve…something as stressful as enlightenment or personal emancipation. I think that there is a time for simple, uncomplicated silence that doesn’t demand any particular outcome. That’s how I feel right now. I think that I am in some kind of mental slumber or subconscious contemplation. I like it, even though every now and then I worry that I should be thinking and feeling more.

Tomorrow we are taking the train- the one and only running Malagasy train- from Fianarantsoa to Manakara. With any luck, we will get there in 7 hours.

Posted by JayneHol 23:52 Archived in Madagascar Tagged travel madagascar driver fianarantsoa antananarivo

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