Strolls and travels

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.

House, shop and workers

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”.

Text is in Creole, meaning “no trash”

Dried leaves of coconut trees are used for making bags, table mats …

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 fishing

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.

Shop on the road

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.

Sega dancing

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…

He was at school, she was in the bus … unforgettable !

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…

Cute kids at school

Sweet faces

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 …

At the airport, she looked at me, what were her thoughts ? She was the last image I saw …

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.

11 comments on “Strolls and travels

  1. Xstine Rouilllard says:

    Une merveille ! Vive les blogs. T’embrasse – Xstine Rouillard
    Ici tout va bien et l’ete pointe bientot le bout du nez … Les enfants grandissent a vue d’oeil . J’aime beaucoup votre blog a toutes les deux . Bonne journée les bretonnes !!!

  2. Paula ~ friend of Nanettes says:

    Wonderful wonderful blog and thanks so much for teaching me about a paradise I will most likely never have the privilege of seeing, but at least I got to see through your eyes. The children’s smiles and beautiful eyes are priceless.

    • Louise says:

      I really like your words, thank you Paula. My target, in writing these few lines, was to “share” (I love this word) my feelings and thoughts memorized during my visits to Rodrigues Island. A part of my heart is dedicated to all these kids, who, in spite of having nothing were so welcoming…Hope to see you again on our blog !

  3. Salut cousine. Ce reportage sur Rodrigues est très fort et en même temps charmant. On peut y revenir plusieurs fois sans se lasser.
    Une petite note pour l’histoire de la région dont je m’intéresse: La flotte anglaise s’est assemblée au nord ouest de l’île avant de se diriger vers le Grand’ Port à L’Ile de France où, comme tu le sais mieux que quiconque, s’est engagée la “Bataille du Grand’ Port”, unique victoire française sur la “Navy” Le mémorial y est inscrit au pied e l’Arc de Triomphe. Je sais bien que tu sais tout cela, mais je l’ai écrit pour ceux qui pourraient s’y intéresser.
    Bravo pour ton très apprécié reportage
    Bises,
    Gervais

  4. Josee blair says:

    It has warm my heart to visit Rodrigue with you Louisie! never been there but heard that one of my great uncle Jauffret went to live( alone) there and never came back to Mauritius! nobody knew what happend to him! I am sure he must have made me lots of little brown cousins !you really captured the soul of the place and the people! keep up the good work . merci encore

  5. Josee blair says:

    Thanks Gervais I have learn something from your comment ,next time I go near the arc de triomphe I will have a look !

  6. maryse from Mauritius says:

    Hello, Louisie, ta vieille cousine s’emerveille de ta vie interessante – passionnante?
    Je me debrouille tres mal avec ces ‘blogs’ mais j’essaye de m’y mettre et de te suivre de loin.Affections, Maryse

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