Let’s travel far away from home, are you all ready to follow me?
Come on, let’s go!
To keep you all out of autumn leaves, storms, rain and winter approaching, I thought I may bring some sun to each of you through this post on Rodrigues Island.
To make you all acquainted with our travel destination, I would to give you some details on this island, this will enable those who don’t know a word about this island, to be informed, for those who know already, this may bring back happy memories. We never finish learning, do we?
Rodrigues Island – about 70 square miles – (in French: îles Rodrigues) named after Dom Diego Rodriguez, is a semi-autonomous island part of the Republic of Mauritius, located in the Indian Ocean, east of Mauritius.
The island was named after the Portuguese explorer Dom Diego Rodriguez in February 1528, but as from the 10th century, Arabs had already visited Rodrigues.
It is of volcanic origin surrounded by coral reef, scattered around are some tiny uninhabited islands and islets. The island gained autonomous status in 2001 and is governed by the Rodrigues Regional Assembly. The capital of the island is Port Mathurin.
English is the official language of the island, but French, Indian languages and some oriental languages are also spoken, there’s also what is named as “Rodriguan Creole”.
People living on the island are of mixed African and French. Main economical targets are farming, fishing and tourism as well as some handicraft.
Octopus is one of the main fishing target in Rodrigues. At sunset, men and women walk in the sea sometimes with a pole but more often bare hands to collect these. Sometimes if they are lucky their basket is quickly filled. Once dried, the octopus are sold in restaurants or cooked at home.
Music is also part of the Rodriguan life, traditional music is linked to their commitment to their roots while the contemporary one is more linked to their attachment to their island. Accordion, drums, triangles are their instruments while sometimes their choreography is based on some old European dances, like Mazak (Mazurka), Polka and Val (Waltz). African tradition has inspired them the Sega, the drums are warmed on the fire before each song, thus providing the quite a fast beat for dancing, songs being in Creole.
I had the great opportunity to visit this island twice, each time I felt very emotional when I had to leave. I had met wonderful Rodiguan people, my feeling was and is still is that this place is one where some words like “human”, “sincerity”, “kindness” are still being applied. This makes you feel light…
I had very strong moments full of emotions : a school teacher inviting me in her class and all the children singing in French for me … A sweet little girl met in the bus, her face was only a smile … A fisherman’s family, living in a small and old house, even so they were very welcoming…
By these photos, you will be able to do some sightseeing, admire the gorgeous scenery, meet sweet people …
I do hope you will feel as if you are on the spot …
Good-bye Rodrigues Island, good-bye You all these children I met,
you must have grown up by now,
I do hope you are still smiling and that your eyes are still talking as they talked to me,
your words are forever in my heart.