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Day 4 - Antsirabe and the ride to Lac Tritriva

MADAGASCAR | Tuesday, 4 May 2010 | Views [1522] | Comments [1]

Wow, what a day! Travelling is as much the meeting of people as the travel itself and boy did we meet some interesting locals! I think this is a post best described through pictures, so I’ll keep it short. Waking early we borrowed a couple of push bikes and ventured out to find Lake Tritriva approximately 17km away from Antsirabe. Getting out of city was in itself interesting, as not having ridden a bike for a while, I was on edge the whole time trying to dodge and weave between the mess of cars, bikes, pousse pousse, zebu carts and pedestrians on the road. Once we cleared the centre though, it was easy sailing and we were soon amongst a beautiful scene of rice patties and corn farms.

The lake (the most famous of the 3 in the area) is approximately 1800m above sea level and we slowly made our way up over bumpy paths and into the rural villages. Often a simple “salaama” (Hello) and a smile was enough to bring out the bright Malagasy spirit. Furthermore, being apparently Japanese looking and a rarity in the rural parts (most tourists hire cars or taxi brousse to reach the lakes), I met with many staring gazes; though they almost always broke into big smiles with the greeting. The children were wonderful. From far away they would spot me and Arno and yell “Bonjour/Salaama vasa!” (Hello foreigner!) I returned by handing out some gummy snakes to the enthusiastic ones who approached me. Such simple gifts were well received and often the children would run back home shrieking and laughing while dangling the coloured candy from their fingers.

At one point, I asked a man if I could photograph him threshing some wheat (very different from CSIRO!). After handing out some more candy (it seemed like a hundred children for sure!), the man’s wife came and invited us to see her home and how they lived. The house was small and rough, but very much a home with one wall decorated with magazine pictures and old, ragged barbie dolls. The wife showed us how she makes hats and souvenirs from left over wheat stems. The skill and speed of her fingers was just extraordinary! Their daughter was also very bright and could already speak some French and English which she’d been taught at school.

 

The journey continued, we saw two of the three lakes and returned to Antsirabe. But as the wise say, the point of a journey is often in getting there and not the destination.

Tags: antsirabe, lake tritriva

Comments

1

lol, were the kids lining up for a photo for you?

  Sam May 24, 2010 1:52 PM

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