Next part of the Trip to Morondava, with comics and photographs !
We can’t go any faster as the road conditions are not great! Thus, we find ourselves driving at a restricted speed!
But many sorts of landscape surprise us
Technical fact : the embossed aspect of the ground is due to the propulsions of 4X4 wheels. Driving on these strias makes the car to vibrate violently. We can avoid this feeling by driving over 60km/h (created by the way new strias). Driving in turn does not reduce the tiredness. Along with this, we have to be very cautious to avoid the potholes
Waterways have allowed men to make rice fileds
The first ferry we have to take use is powered by two Chinese single-cylinder blocks. (the banging noise will certainly delight Harley buffs !)
Each skipper has to look after his bar and his engine. Perfect synchronization is required for docking
Red waters of the TSIRIBIHINA
The second ferry’s engine broke down since four months now. The boat is hand-powered by young men or women who make use of long poles. A pleasant atmosphere is guaranteed (fun and enjoyable time) !
It is better to use an appropriate vehicle, especially when it’s low tide
We settled down once we reached Bekopaka.
Better toilets (with tiles and water jugs) were available, but Nirvân took them for the guardian’s office (true story), and kept using the discarded ones.
Despite the fact that the shower drums were filled with the red water of the river and the slatted floor was gummy, it was still possible for us to feel clean after a shower.
The TSINGY, which are geologic karstic formations and are unique in the world, have an altitude from 150 to 700m. Their origins date back to 200 millions years ago when oceans were covering the extended area, sized to 157 710 hectares.
It was possible to discover the small part of it, near the Bekopaka river
Once on the spot, we had a small chat with a local guide man and learnt that:
we should have taken a full-package which would have included a certified guide + safety accessories even it would have cost a certain price !
the only possibility left for us is to go back and pay the fee in Bekopaka, otherwise it would be considered as an offence
That would mean: 3 more hours of track road, without forgetting that the gasoline isn’t unlimited, and that the first filling station is in Morondava!
There were no signs or banners which informed us of such facilities available at Bekopaka. No such thing has even been clearly mentioned in Lonely Planet.
In fact, none could imagine that some people can reach the Tsingy without seeking the services of the Morondava’s tourist offices first.
We were disheartened but yet, we decided to relax by talking a discreet walk, with the aim of making the most of the spot
If we had a guide we could have given him a name !
There are upto 101 known species of Lemurs and all of them are endemic to Madagascar. Some sifaka soyeux followed us from up in their trees during our walk. One must not to mistake it with Sakafo joyeux = happy meal in Malagasy)
While the Tsingy are here to stay for several more millions of years, the white lemurs on the other hand, are part of the three most rare and endangered species
After 3 hours of walking, we met the guide again who is red with anger, threatening to punish us with a heavy fine. We leave the spot happy, without having seen the popular Tsingy, but without any regrets. We were happy with our walk, the company of the lemurs and didn’t bother with the pebbles.
Once we explain the whole situation to the chief guide of the guide Association,who is more understanding, we stand a chance of avoiding being fined.
After having visited many rooms in hotels which weren’t very attractive and oddly enough, were curiously quite high priced, we find the extreme opposit at the Menabe hotel
For 25 000 Ariarys (8 €uros), one can get a double room with fan, mosquito net, private shower and WC, hot water, a little vanilla-scented soap is offered, good smelling sheets and a clean room
That was enough to put our backpacker roles to rest, allowing us to taste the supreme luxury of a night that promises to be restful
We fall asleep at 8:30 pm !
This bleating could actually rise up to 80db in our room !
When we think the worst has already happened !
Unlike the maurician muezzin’s songs, which were shortly broadcasted, and those in Dubaï that were toneful and refined, this one was a torture. Especially when we know that most of Malagasy are melomaniacs
TO BE CONTINUED : THE WHITE GOLD OF MORONDAVA’S SALTWORK