1st January 2012
24.12.2011 - 14.01.2012 36 °C
It’s starting to feel like Survivor. And a New Year’s hangover doesn’t help.
Where should I start?
Two buckets of joy have just arrived on our Bungalow stoep. We’re back at Mahalina. It’s hot. And if it is going to rain, it’s not happening soon. Fresh water is a commodity; a sacred and prized possession. Deciding when to use it is a skill.
Lunch was positively disgusting. It consisted of Malagasy rice- again; bland red sauce – again; and in the red sauce - this is the most exciting part - was not fish (since we still haven’t caught any), it was egg. It looked like the contents of most of our stomachs over the past few days. I ate a spoonful of rice and sulked silently (before secretly tucking into some Provitas and Pick 'n Pay tinned mussels). I suspect that the cook’s hangover had something to do with it. I just honestly do not know how a hung over person could prepare that without getting sick themselves.
Anyway, the dhow is out of sprite, coke and tonic water, which leaves us with local rum, local lemonade and bottled water. To quote Mike, the local rum “will take the hair off Witblitz’s chest”, likely make you blind and will probably instantaneously kill any bug that dares try suck blood from you. The local lemonade has an identity crisis; it is nowhere near lemonade or anything lemony for that matter, and instead tastes distinctly like bubblegum. It doesn’t work well on its own or as a mixer. Bottled water is dull and we get a complimentary bottle each day anyway.
Things are not looking good. With any luck, Weather Gods will send in another seasonal downpour, so I can at least shower and be happy.
Let’s backtrack to yesterday, which was New Year’s eve. Our trip to South Africa island got cut short by the approaching band of clouds and what turned out to be a 7-hour torrential downpour. This was by no means tragic. We were spared another sticky 37 degree day; salty items of clothing got hung in the rain to rinse clean; and we could have a substantial freshwater shower that didn’t involve rationed brown water.
Then we tucked into many bottles of bubbly, wine, some local rum and some beer, and Mike and I ended up celebrating with our boat crew and the entire village population at what I’d guess is the Tavern or “club”. Thanks to some blaring and distorted Wawa (a renowned Malagasy popstar), I believe it was definitely one of my better New Year’s celebrations!