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East Sussex, United Kingdom
I'm a 62yr old AOL refugee, living on the south coast of England. I love travelling and sharing my photos. I live with Nina and Katinka, my two Maine Coon cats.


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Crystal Clock

Sunday, 2 November 2008

On the way to Isalo National Park

This is my third attempt to add a post so I'm going to do it in two entries. Maybe 40 photos is too many for one entry! As I got to enter the last photo my computer froze and the cursor just started jumping and crackling like a badly tuned in radio!

I've been changing the layout of the journal, I prefer this template for showing photos, they come out nice and big ~ much clearer to look at. I had so many problems with the last entry, I must have spent around eight hours getting it right! Far too long.I'm keeping this journal solely for holiday photos as it's public. My old AOL journal I'll keep for personal entries. I told you a couple of entries ago that I wanted to go to Tunisia next year to do another tour with Mohamed. Well, Saga are fully booked for single rooms all year so I'm going to have to wait till 2010 now. Andy and I are hoping to do a Caribbean cruise in February or March, then in November we're booking up to go to Perth, Western Australia for a couple of weeks so I'll be getting lots more fodder for entries then! Back to Madagascar.... we've just left the rain forest and are on our way to Isalo National Park which is in the desert ~ the place I said looks like the American western scenery. These next photos are ones I took on the long journey there. You'll see I've added text to a few; this is one of the new features of Picasa3 which I downloaded today. I've used Picasa2 for a few years but this new version has so many more features.
I forgot to mention in my last post about the steps in the rain forest. Hundreds of them ~ big ones, some were nearly 18" high like small walls to climb. No hand rails either! There were 150 steps down to the rain forest floor then 150 up to the other side. We had to do the same route on the way back which meant 600 steps in total! How I did them with my chest infection and 90°F of heat I don't know. Most of the time Mohamed was there to hold my hand and drag me up! Once down in the rain forest we had many banks to negotiate.... slippery ones! Luckily it was dry there but with dead leaves on the forest floor it made it very slippery. We had to hang on to tree trunks and anything else that was to hand to steady ourselves and prevent ourselves from sliding downhill and ending up in an ungainly heap on the forest floor! I expect the lemurs were watching and laughing at us as they swung effortlessly from tree to tree! I wouldn't have missed the experience for the world, I just wish there'd been fewer steps or that I'd learnt to swing from the treetops before I got there!
So.... on with the photos.

This cute chameleon was in a tree at the place we stopped to see traditional paper being made by hand. The Madagascans invented this form of paper to write the Koran on.
First they strip the bark off the tree and soak it till it's fully laden with water. Then they squeeze it out and make balls of it. The balls are flattened out with rolling pins to make sheets of paper.Next it's decorated with dried flowers, these stick to the paper when they pour water over it, it's all very eco friendly!

Next the sheets are put on frames and laid in the sun to dry out completely.

Here's a cute little girl whose mother worked there.

This little boy was quite happy to sit in the sunshine and play in the sand all day!

The scenery was spectacular all over the island.

These children had asked for empty water bottles. We saved them every day and handed them out. The people drink from the rivers which are a muddy brown ~ rather them than me! The bottles come in handy so they don't have to make so many trips to the river each day. It's a hard life over there, it really opens your eyes to travel to other countries and see how others live.

This is a memorial to some people who died in a plane crash at this spot.

Apart from having very strong stomachs to drink water they also seem to have very tough feet, hardly any where shoes!

More paddy fields. Madagascans eat a lot of rice with vegetables and hot spicy sauces. They don't supply all of their needs so have to import some. I thought it odd that a country couldn't support their needs but have read since I got home that the UK imports 70% of it's food!

A village miles from anywhere, compared to a lot of the villages I'll be showing you this is quite a posh one!

Neat little houses, muddy water in the river to drink ~ it really is one of the more well to do areas!

This is the travellers palm I told you about, you can drink water from the trunk. I think I'd rather do that than stick my head in the river!

These ladies were doing their washing in the river.

A rather ramshackle old shop!

See the blackened top window? That's where they do their cooking.

Now this is a nice house.... look, it's even got a balcony! I'm not being facetious but could you envisage living there?!

I'm not going to add a signature tag, I'm too frightened that I'm going to lose this again! So I'll just say goodbye, have a good weekend. I may be back later to add the rest of the pictures.
Jeannette xx


Julia said...

You are so very very lucky to be able to travel to all these beautiful pictures. I love your photo's

Joan said...

As you say you learn a lot from travel. Aane we have the nerve to complain about the weather!. Love Joan
Great pictures

Lisa said...

I can safely say my animals housing is ten fold better than what those poor folks call home. I like the layout with the larger pictures, they are much easier to see and I like seeing more details. Despite the poverty it looks like a beautiful place.

Are they washing the clothes in the same water they are drinking? Ewwww, just makes me shudder to think about drinking dirty water.

lisa jo said...

as beautiful as it is, it is so poor.....but i bet they have little polution and not the worries we do. These pics are priceless. XO

gina said...

what wonderful, wonderful pix!! i love the lizards and chamelons...and those precious children and how they live really breaks your heart, but most appear to be happy. interesting to see how others across the world live, makes me realize how blessed we are. great 2 entries!

My Creative Spirit award given to me by Gina

My Creative Spirit award given to me by Gina

Superior Scribbler award given to me by Jeannette

Superior Scribbler award given to me by Jeannette

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