02 juillet 2012

Tyred flat out.

                  On Saturday, there was the Grand Tyre Race in Mamoudzou. Hundreds of people had come to race and to watch, as this is THE big event of the year in Mayotte. The idea is to race for 2.2km through the capital city, driving a used tyre in front of oneself by means of two sticks. In order to propel the tyre forward, the ends of the sticks are fitted inside the tyre - sometimes just lodged between the walls of the tyre, sometimes stuck in a yoghurt pot to keep them together -... [Lire la suite]
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02 avril 2012

What's the weather like?

                   The rainy season is over now, and the wind is just starting up. It's still hot though, and will remain so until next November, at which point it will get slightly hotter. It's slightly more breathable now, however. These screenshots are from my Windows weather application on the computer. They show the temperature in Mamoudzou, Poitiers and Dorchester. It makes for interesting comparisons, especially first thing in the... [Lire la suite]
Posté par calligraphy à 20:46 - - Commentaires [0] - Permalien [#]
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22 mars 2012

My Granddaughter Went To Market And She Bought...

               We went to the market the other day. The big, covered market in the Place de la République in Mamoudzou. We'd never gone inside before, never really gathered that there was actually something in there, just seen the big pink building from the outside. It's joined to the tourist office, which is also pink. The covered market opened in 2009 and was welcomed as a godsend by the street sellers, supreme recognition of their jobs. The building stretches... [Lire la suite]
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19 février 2012

Mahabou and M'Gombani

          This Sunday afternoon was lovely and fine, so we set off to walk up and around the Pointe Mahabou, a cliff on the other side of Mamoudzou where the very first sultan of Mayotte, Adriansouli, was buried. Other cars were driving up, so I started driving up too, then got shouted at because P wanted to walk up and didn’t see any point in giving the car a workout. Drove back down again, parked at the bottom, got out of the car and P started shrieking. One of the back tyres was half flat.... [Lire la suite]
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24 août 2011

School has started.

         School started today, with the teachers getting together and meeting the heads. Quite an exotic-looking school, with coconut trees and banana trees growing in the playgrounds. The rooms themselves are pretty run-down, with flaking paint, windows that either don’t open or don’t have any glass in them, fans on the ceiling which don’t work because the fuses have blown and there aren’t any spare, no curtains on the windows because the school doesn’t have enough money... There are two TVs... [Lire la suite]
Posté par calligraphy à 09:52 - - Commentaires [0] - Permalien [#]
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10 août 2011

Numbers

          Mayotte, Maoré or Jazirat al Mawet (the Island of Death - very reassuring) is the 101st French department, as from May 2011. It's a collection of several small islands in the Indian Ocean, north of Madagascar. Its total population is 209 530 mostly spread over two main islands, "Petite Terre" and "Grande Terre". The small island is 6km long. The big island is 20km by 40km. The total area of Mayotte is 376km². We're leaving for Mayotte on 14th August 2011. The train... [Lire la suite]