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Knowing we had to get up and go today made it easier to make a 7am breakfast and a 730 departure.

Medi drove us back to the same beach as yesterday but today we had a competent captain and a working boat.

The trip to Nosy Iranja took about 1.5 hours. It is actually two islands at high tide that are connected by a long sandbar at low tide. We only visited the larger of the two islands, as the low tide today wasn’t until late afternoon. We were able to walk maybe half way to the smaller island.

Lunch in the village was the same menu as yesterday but today we were with a group and the servings were more family style. We met a group of young Italian men and a few french folks. We all spoke enough of the other languages to have a good conversation and say “Please pass the….”

We walked the village a bit and took in a Mom who was not pleased kids were swimming in the water. Either at all or unsupervised. The photo is before they got caught. They were having a blast as kids do.

Some village shots.

After another swim in that 30º water we headed off to another small island called Nosy Antsoha. The island is a national park and again we got to hang out up close and personal with another bunch of lemurs – we keep thinking that we are done with these guys, and yet they keep showing up. There were a few black & white ruffed, two golden Sifaka and, of course, tons of the common brown. They all wanted the papaya pieces and bananas we brought with us. The Sifaka is affectionately called the ‘dancing lemur’. The video shows why.

Dave had 6 on him at one point and Kris 4.

This one didn’t want to actually jump on Dave, just reach out for fruit. They were hanging on those vines like little Tarzans!

As we cruised back we both commented we smelled like lemur and our shirts are now officially filthy. They were all over us and very friendly but a little dirty and of course don’t shower often.

From the car window on the way back to the hotel, we saw a group of maybe 50 people hanging around the side of the road at a big intersection. It turns out there was a cock fight going on. All we saw was two skinny roosters pecking at each other, but the crowd was quite excited. Not our cup of tea, though, we’d rather not watch.

As a side note about Nosy Be – about 5% of the permanent population here are Italian ex-pats. Medi pointed out that all the large houses we see on the beaches or up on the hills belong to Europeans. All we’ve seen so far are old, fat, men in the company of young beautiful Malagasy girls. Kind of icky actually.

Our resort is surrounded by Ylang Ylang and today we got some good photos to show. The trees are similar to coffee plants and the flowers look a bit like orchids. When we pass by them in the car, we can smell the ‘perume’ of the flowers. The trees are topped at two years to keep them short and easy to harvest, although the branches turn downward and the trees start to look really gnarly. It takes 100kg of flowers to make 1L of extract. That’s a lot of small light flowers to make not much.

The dirt/mud patch here is the road and there are a dozen or so trees in the shot.

A tree up closer.

Tomorrow is a resort day and our official 25th wedding anniversary. The genesis of this trip and why we often travel in May.

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