With a large Christian population on Nosy Be, weekends and Sundays here are for relaxation and celebration. So that’s exactly what the community did. Following the usual trip to camp on Friday for swimming, meetings and partying, virtually the whole group returned to town for a day out. I had my youth club group to tend to in the morning (who could abandon their eager faces?), but as soon as I was done with that, a couple of us hastened on up to meet the others at the nearby cascades.
Not quite as nearby as previously thought, and rather a long way to go in a juddering tuck-tuck... Although, hats off to the driver, he had the driving skills – we drove from road, to track, to path, to stream until FINALLY arriving at our destination – alive, just. The cascade and pool beneath were predictably awesome, comparing favourably to the ‘cascade’ nearby camp (also lovingly described as a trickle).
Next was your classic Saturday night – great food, great drink, great people, great conversation, and generally great fun to be had. The Sunday, however, was a Sunday with a difference... when Marine and Forest left for camp... we left too!
Time for a mini taster weekend of the other programmes.
Sunday night we were immediately initiated into the forest lifestyle with a night walk through thunder, lightning and torrential rain (no we didn’t bring our coats). I never imagined how satisfying it would be to be able to shout to the group ‘I think I’ve found something!’, as through drips and dark you see the snoozing shape of a chameleon, rudely awakened. I found two, just saying.
Monday was the marine taster with a dive/snorkel trip to Tanikely Island! Turns out I am not a natural, but here’s hoping the next 5 months will give me all the time I need to summon the courage to trust a breathing tube which clearly will work (why, irrational fears, why?!) So, anyway, the mask and I got on better than the snorkel, so I still had an amazing time holding my breath as I bobbed along observing the crazy-looking fishes and trying to blend in with the schools. Also, Tanikely has lemurs! But the best part of the day: I DIDN’T EVEN BURN!
By Celine Kerslake-Sim - Teaching Community Project Coordinator
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