After about 50 hours travelling through Singapore and Ethiopia, one crazy day in Madagascar’s capital, Antananarivo, and 12 hours driving through rural Malagasy communities, I finally made it to my final destination – Kianjavato.
We arrived in the dark, so we didn’t really see much. When I emerged from my tent the next morning I was in total awe of my surroundings, and filled with excitement for my next three months.
Our little tent huts are totally immersed in the Malagasy jungle: traveller’s palms, fruit trees, ferns, vines, bamboo, orchids – everything a vibrant green. We are surrounded by mountains, including Voatovavy and Sanga Sanga, which are the two sites where I’ll be monitoring black and white ruffed lemurs (Varecia).
For this cohort, there’s just going to be me and my new friend Savanna who is from California. We’ve been here three days now and since it’s the weekend, we’ve been using the time to get settled in and meet all the current volunteers, guides, workers and locals.
There’s one road here, with little villages dotted along it every couple of hundred meters or so. The streets are lined with families selling all kinds of fruit, grains and fried snacks called mofu. Everywhere we go children’s heads pop out of windows to greet us excitedly with ‘Salama Vazaha‘ – hello foreigner!
Today was market day in Kianjavato, so people came from all over to buy and sell things. It is such a vibrant little community here, everyone so friendly and willing to help with anything you need. I already know I’m going to love it here.
Tomorrow I start field work, and I absolutely can’t wait!
PS. I’m going to post when my internet is strong enough and edit on the weekends when I have access to a computer. Bare with me if there’s any mistakes or formating errors!