Mayotte Postcards_0019

The only existing postcard of Mayotte during the rainy season.



The rainy season has just started. Just. As in two days ago.

This is worrying the meteorologists.


You see, Mayotte usually gets two lots of rain. A small spell, which usually comes some time in October and lasts for a week or two, and is known as the "Pluie des Mangues", or mango rain. This is because it hails the beginning of the mango season. And the mangoes are delicious. The second spell is the huge, monsoon rain. It usually starts at the beginning of November and lasts until April. During this season, it rains for a good couple of hours every day at the beginning and the end, and can easily rain all day in January. Temperatures skyrocket to 34°C permanently, and humidity is 100%, so breathing can be hard work, never mind actually getting anything done.

This year, we didn't get the mango rain. From May to September, Mayotte has had the second dryest winter since 1954, said the chief meteorologist. The only day we actually had any water was on the day French president François Hollande arrived. On top of that, October was 75% dryer than usual. They're expecting a flux from North-East to East, which should bring some much-needed rain to the now brown countryside, but nobody seems too sure about the whole thing. They haven't started restricting water yet, although they plan to do so if it hasn't started raining properly before the end of November.

We can't realistically ask the president to come back, said the newspaper, so we'll just have to watch the sky.