Greetings from Morondova, gateway to the Baobabs! I flew in yesterday morning early on a small D60 plane, with propellers and all. There wasn’t a safety presentation, but needless to say, for once in my life I read through the safety card thoroughly, cover to cover. But all was well, even when the pilot got the plane steadied at our cruising altitude and started reading the daily paper. Such is life here….
I love Morondova—it’s a bustling, friendly town on the shores of the Mozambique Channel, a mere 300-400 kilometers from the African continent. I head down to Nosy Kely, the strip of land that juts out into the channel for dinners, where I can watch the sunset on the beach, eat lots of fresh seafood, and sip Malagasy rum flavored with lychee (there are perks to fieldwork). I watched a local woman come into a restaurant last night carrying freshly caught langostines, or lobsters. They were gorgeous, with bright blue, yellow and red coloring.
I’m getting all my supplies (i.e., toilet paper and chocolate) ready to head out for my first stint of field work. I’ll be in Kirindy Mitea National Park from tomorrow until the 4th of July, with a possible break on the 25th and 26th of June to come back to Morondova to take part in Madagascar’s Independence day festivities. I’m sure it will be a party! I’ll send stories from the field when I get back….wish me luck with the ol’ mouse lemurs.