20 September 2007
Learning a little patience (Mora Mora)
MAROANTSETRA, MADAGASCAR – Dear John, I’m sitting outside my palm-roof bungalo in another NE Madagascar town that looks like it is a cross between something on “Lost” and the Wild West … they use more wood here than elsewhere. So far, this stay has had just one goal – figure out how to get 50 miles south of here, to reach the village I plan to write about. Easier said than done, as between me and Imorona (the village) lies a stretch of road that is muddy year-round, to the point that trucks sink down to their wheel wells. It is crisscrossed by six rivers with no bridges. And it bounds up and down several mountains along the coast. “Bush taxis” normally run the route, but the one that starts in this town is broken. So, tomorrow at 6 a.m., I will find out by phone whether I’ve been able to sneak my way into the bed of a private truck, as cargo. There will be a sideways bench (wooden) for me to sit on, if it’s a go. My ass is going to be super sore, because the trip is 12 to 24 hours, I’ve heard, depending on the road conditions. If I don’t make it on this truck another probably won’t leave until Friday, which is too late for me. If nothing else, hopefully this trip will leave me with a heaping dose of go with the flow-style patience. Here, they give that a phrase: “mora mora.” And everyone seems to have it down.
I’m doing my best to smile my way through the hiccups. Love, John
PS: a rooster just walked behind my chair.