22 juin 2015

Girls, tyres and ministers, oh my!

                  Last Saturday was the tyre-race. Just to be different, I'd decided that this year, I wanted to run with a big tyre, a lorry tyre, one of those huge things that come up to about chest level. I knew the time-keeper for the tyre race, so I talked him into creating a category for me and letting a team of girls run with the big tyres, which has never been done before as only men have attempted this feat in the past. However, we did adapt it just a little:... [Lire la suite]

15 juin 2015

Tsoundzou

               These are some typical roadside scenes in Mayotte. The above photos were taken in the village of Tsoundzou. There's a bridge over a pretty river, where various outrigger canoes were parked.                                The bridge is actually fairly new. It was started about ten years ago, but the soil kept on being swept away by the river and the rainy season, so it only advanced in... [Lire la suite]
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18 mai 2015

Mamoudzou By Night

                                                     I was sent on an espionage mission the other day. A friend of mine suspected his wife of cheating on him, and had asked me to go to a Senegalese party which she was planning to attend in order to check if the new boyfriend was there. When I got there, there was a jazz quartet in full flow. I already knew two of them and... [Lire la suite]
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11 mai 2015

Market Day Has Gone Forever

                     There used to be two markets in Mamoudzou. The official one, and the clandestine one. The official one is under cover, in a fairly recent building where sellers rent out spaces the size of your average garage for 120€/month. Pretty expensive by Mahorese standards, and difficult to cover when your only customers are tourists who want to look round but would rather buy cheaper and better-quality clothes online. Add to that the fact that every seller is... [Lire la suite]
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01 décembre 2014

The Fashion Salon

                          The Fashion Salon was last weekend. Not usually the type of event I go for, but there are few enough events of any sort in Mayotte for me to try and go to the ones there are. On Saturday evening, there was the fashion show and competition. Every year, they organize a competition around one particular type of material. Two years ago, it was Mahorese chiromani, a type of material often worn by ladies here. Last year, it was jute.... [Lire la suite]
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09 juin 2014

Another one bites the dust

           Each village in Mayotte has its own football club. Some of the most famous are the Mtsamboro Bees, the Mzouazia Twins, the Rosador of Passamaïnty and the Southern Miracle.                          And without fail, during the dry season, all matches are played amid clouds of red dust. This said, in the rainy season, everyone ends up soaking wet and the same brownish-red mud colour.          ... [Lire la suite]
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02 juin 2014

Wenka

           I'm currently writing a lesson plan on graffiti and street art, the idea being to teach the kids what the point of each is and how to tell the difference. As there are a lot of tags here, I wanted to start off with pictures of graffiti around their home village in the hopes that they would recognize some of it and be able to find the rest pretty easily. What started off as a short trip down the main road turned into a two-hour photo safari throughout the village, with cries of "Miss... [Lire la suite]
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05 mai 2014

Carnival Week-End II : A Colourful Parade

           The carnival in commemoration of Slavery Abolition Day continued on the Sunday as well. First of all, I wanted to show you the diversity of musical instruments. In case you're wondering, the most prized instrument here is an old washing-machine drum. It's found in all the ceremonies and parties. One of these drums (top photo) was being used to carry the group's water bottles. Another useful instrument is an oven tray turned upside-down. I even saw one man playing a Coke can.    ... [Lire la suite]
28 avril 2014

Carnival Week-End I : A Motivated Zebu

              Sunday 27th April is Slavery Abolition Day in Mayotte. This is usually commemorated by a carnival, comprising various dances, an exhibition of some sort at the Tourist Office and possibly another event. On Saturday, something was planned to start at half past three. Nothing was said about what was to happen, just that there would be something in the Republic Square of Mamoudzou. I invited a friend along and showed up in time to see a wonderful Mahorese corrida. In a Spanish... [Lire la suite]
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24 mars 2014

Two Classical Concerts Went To Market...

         This week-end and last week-end, there were two concerts. Not the same one repeated but two different ones. The common denominator was the music school director's sister, Odile, who plays first flute in the Avignon orchestra and who sings too. She was in Mayotte on holiday for ten days, so they wanted to show her off as much as possible while she was here. She and the cellist, Kerstin, a Swedish lady I've already played with a couple of times and who is lovely, have been working together for the... [Lire la suite]
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