Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Madagasikara - Day 02


After just-enough sleep, I got up, showered, and went out to look around Cambre Du Voyageur in the daylight. There were about 8 teeny-tiny but comfy-neat-clean independent units with different layouts. The bathrooms were impeccable and adorable: a wash basin at the center, a shower area to the left, and toilet to the right, all at slightly different levels--easier to maintain. Wish I had pictures to show just how cute even those things were.

The variety of plants crammed into that little plot was impressive. There were a couple of people cleaning and tending to the gardens all through the morning.

The flowers were equally amazing: some dainty, some mimicking reptiles or insects, some very brightly colored, and they all seemed rather happy in their surroundings. Or maybe I was projecting! :P

Every nook had some lovely detail worked into it to make the place even more interesting. Vines, statues, mirrors, window locks, salt-and-pepper shakers with unusual shapes, and well-reused bullock-cart!

So, basically, we did just this for a couple of hours...

The restaurant also was so warm and welcoming, just like the people that ran the place. Every wall, every table, every corner had something that catches your eye.

We had a hot, satiating breakfast (not all of it is visible in this picture)...

This was the wonderful team of people who ran the place. Only the hostess (leftmost in the pic) would be out and about asking people what they need and serving it. The others were either in the kitchen or the garden or doing chores elsewhere. They obliged very sweetly when I invited them for a picture.

This place and the people were so delightful, I cried because I didn't want to leave... this hasn't happened to me in 25 years!!

Around 11:00 am, we checked out and went to the local market, to shop for the stuff that would sustain us for the next 2 days on the river. The two boys helped carry the loads of vegetables and grains back to our SUV. Love those grins!

Then, we fueled up, passed through town and headed west to Miandrivazo. We made a stop for lunch at some point, but didn't find anything that we could eat, so we binged on chips and other such things that we carried from the Antsirabe market. Our guide and driver had their usual zebu meat and rice meal, and while waiting for them, we sought refuge under a lone tree in a large open area where groups of kids played with abandon. It was quite hot outside, and we were warned to be careful about our stuff, so we didn't take out the camera for pictures.

On the way, we stopped to ogle at some locals who were collecting gold from a stream. It's a legit activity there

By 5:45 pm, we reached our destination, La Princesse Tsiribihina, where a kid name Prince, a cheeky chameleon, and lovely, sunkissed room welcomed us.

After watching a wonderful sunset, we went for swim in the pool, came back refreshed, and then had dinner in their spacious wooden-floored, completely wooden-furnished restaurant.

...and then it was time to make good use of that gorgeous bed.

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