Mercy Ships

Mercy Ships
The largest NGO hospital ship in the world providing free medical care to the forgotten poor

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Out and About

We've been in Madagascar for 2 weeks now. I am slowly getting to know my new home.  School keeps me very busy during the week, but on the weekend, I try to get out and explore the city.

For 1000 ariary (approx. 30 cents), you can take a tuk-tuk (a 3 wheeled open air taxi) around town.

View from inside of a tuk-tuk
Last weekend some of us went to explore the local markets, where they sell all kinds of homemade baskets, cards, sandals, purses, frames, paintings, as well as locally grown vanilla and other spices! Unfortunately I only know about 4 words in Malagasy so far (hello, goodbye, thank you, and excuse me), but my trip to the market motivated me to try to learn more.

Here is me and Ivanna at a local ice cream shop

If you get thirsty while you're out, stop for a coconut - it's so refreshing!
One of the main roads through town goes along the ocean

I also borrowed a bicycle last weekend and biked out to the beach.  There is a beach right near the ship, but it is not advisable to swim there.  But a 1/2 hour bike ride got us to a beach where we can swim.  There is also a restaurant, Ocean 501, right there on the beach.  Even at an amazing beach front restaurant, prices are extremely cheap. You can get a meal for a few dollars.

Amazing lunch!

At Ocean 501 with Robert, the science teacher

Enjoying the beach from a hammock in the shade.

In other news, the hospital is now in full swing and we had our Academy Open House this past Wednesday.  I'll tell you more about both in my next blog posts!

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Arrival in Mada!

We are finally docked in what will be our new home for the next 10 months: Tamatave, Madagascar. Arrival day was so exciting.  All the crew spent the morning hanging out on decks 7 and 8 where we could watch land slowly get closer and closer.

View of Tamatave coast as we are sailing in.

Celebrating our arrival with excitement and lots of photos!  Bronnie, me, and Myriam.
The port where our ship is docked.

Another view of the beach as we are pulling into port.

Mercy Ship friends on the dock to greet us.

This weekend I finally found time to start exploring my new city. More on that in my next blog post!