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Indian Ocean Islands

sunny 87 °F
View Sailing Around the World & Around the World with Bill and Hope on HopeEakins's travel map.

You’ll be glad to know that we made it safely through the pirate zone. We are now in the southern Indian Ocean en route to Madagascar, having spent the last few days visiting the islands of Mauritius and Réunion. Mauritius used to be the home of the dodo bird, a very large bird that lost the ability to fly because it did not have any predators. So when human beings came to Mauritius in the 17th century, dodos were an easy prey and a favorite source of food. So many of the birds were killed that the dodos became extinct within 200 years. Their loss is a sad reminder of the irreparable harm that human beings can do to the earth's environment.

Réunion used to be a French colony but since 1947 has been an overseas “department” of France. It is odd to hear the people of Réunion speak of France as the “mainland,” since France is many thousands of miles away. However, that is probably no different than Hawaii being a part of the United States even though it is out in the middle of the Pacific Ocean.

An interesting fact about our next destination, Madagascar, is that this large island off the coast of Africa is the only place on earth where lemurs, a species of monkey with big eyes and ringed tails, are to be found. I hope that we human beings do a better job preserving these delightful animals than we did with dodos.

We didn’t have enough time to see the lemurs on Madagascar, but we did visit the port town of Port Dauphin. The people of Madagascar are very poor; the average yearly income is $1400. When we were waiting to board the van to take us into town, returning passengers warned us not to get off once we arrived. “People surround you trying to get you to buy souvenirs and give them money,” they said.

In the town, we did get crowded by eager vendors, mostly little children offering bead necklaces. There were also many taxi drivers wanting to show us the sights. However, all we had to do was say, “No, thank you” and keep on walking. We were soon left alone except for one small boy who continued to follow us until we bought one of his necklaces.
Mauritius beach

Mauritius beach

Ft. Dauphin clothing store

Ft. Dauphin clothing store

Grace and balance in Madagascar

Grace and balance in Madagascar

Jeweler of Madagascar

Jeweler of Madagascar

H&B in Reunion

H&B in Reunion

Posted by HopeEakins 00:29 Archived in Madagascar

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Comments

Hello, Eakins,

Glad to hear you are well! In our last blogging lesson, we had a lot of fun learning about Madagascar and South Africa. Thank you so much for the really cool bracelets - we've been wearing them ever since we got them :) Here are some of the questions and comments we had:

MARIAH
i dont think i will be able to survive on tht a much money [as the people in Madagascar]. becuase i would have to pay rent,tax,food,and trandpertashion here in amica thing are very exspensive. that would probly last you 3 munths.

my qestion is when you gyes are when u went too that huge 8 floor mall did you like it and bought alot, you prbly didnt want to leave.

my comet you both are lucky u can see the hole would and have fun wile were at school!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

JOHN
No, I would not [be able to survive on the average yearly income of a person from Madagascar] because I can't pay for food or a home.

Did people steal a lot in Durban?
How are you guys doing?
p.s MY grandma says hi.
-John

AVANTE
Comment: If I Ever Went To Madagascar I Would Want To Stay On The Boat Because I Would Never Want To See A Talking Animals!

Question: How Did It Make You Feel When The Little Kid Kept On Following You Did You Feel Forced Or Bothered? If So Why?

JALIZ AND ISIS
how do you know that they rob in south africa and i like the picture that you put in the travellerspoint

i hope you have a lot of fun over there and thank you for the bracelets :P

We wish you continued safe travels in your final weeks!

Sincerely,
TEDS History class

by TEDS.History

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