Living Vicariously As A Peripatetic Shutterbug

{ More musings from the Cantankerous Old Mule }

Where people dare to live

I mentioned last week what a shocking state this city is in – with roads badly potholed because of all the rain. Sadly, it’s worse than I first imagined. Widespread flooding has been reported in the press and on social media, and on Friday the government shut schools and asked people to stay off the roads because of further possible flooding. Tens of thousands of people have been displaced from low-lying areas, dykes have failed, homes have been washed away and landslides have been reported. Sadly, there have been scores of fatalities.

I was actually on the road on Friday, and saw the chaos first-hand. One road I used to travel often, between two lakes, was under water in places and we saw several homes up to their roofs in water. It’s heartbreaking. Our trip across town, 17km or so in total, took all of two and a quarter hours – and that was without school traffic.

In contrast, the south of the island is suffering from severe drought.

People are, from what I hear, plain fed up with the government, which just does not seem to have the capacity, resources or will to help. In several places in the city I saw locals taking matters into their own hands (literally) by temporarily fixing potholes. Sure, it’s to make a quick Ariary (the local currency) as they stand in the middle of the road asking passing road users for donations, but good for them, they are helping in their little way to at least get traffic moving again.

I’d hate to leave this post there – on such a negative note. All I can say is that the people, in general, are keeping their heads above water and daring to live as well as they can. During a brief patch of sunshine last week, I walked around our community and shot people going about their every day lives.  Everyone had a smile for me; I chatted to some; we spoke about how things were sure to get better.

They will get through this, with or without their leaders’ help, because that’s what they do. They’re Malagasy.

 

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One comment on “Where people dare to live

  1. There_Lot
    March 4, 2015

    Had to smile for the pork transport! Breakfast, maybe? Beautifully captured.

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This entry was posted on March 2, 2015 by in Madagascar and tagged , , .
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