Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Trip to Mauritius

I'm back but operating in slow motion, recovering from jetlag and too much fun. It started with pounding waves from the tail end of a cyclone.

The weather calmed down but for me it was a continuous barrage of sensations rediscovering Mauritius, the island where I was born, and reconnectiing with relatives, friends, and the exotic landscape. With the awareness of a camera in hand, every corner I turned seemed to offer images for thought.

People are so approachable, warm, and friendly along the coastal villages. They live with so little and yet seem so content and happy. I wanted to feel the heart of the island through its fishermen, its children and the people who make it tick, and wished I could spend more time learning their way of life.

To appreciate the two extremes of the island fully, I spent a couple of days in the pampered environment of a luxury resort. However, it takes only a few days to indulge in such decadence: freshly cut flowers and champagne to welcome us, thick, fluffy bathrobes and towels, private pool, spa, gourmet buffet, tea served by villa master, etc. After the novelty wears off, it feels more like an artificial paradise, illusory, not in touch with the real world, but it's still an experience not to be missed, especially when snorkelling and discovering underwater wonders. And it's great to know that the island's economy is thriving from European tourists who flock to these amazing resorts that dot the island's coast.

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