The Beach Party!

So our new friends had invited us to a beach party for their buddies birthday. We umm-ed and arr-ed about it and whether we were going to go or not. But our new friends insisted we come and were not letting us go home. We were exhausted, our bodies were sore but our friends were so excited for us to come that how could we not. We reached the public beach between the hotels on Royal Road in Flic en Flac, we parked the car and were lead through the forest of casuarina trees, where we found people setting up DJ equipment, getting the braai ready, making a fire and the cakes and booze were placed on the table ready to go.

It really was something we had never experienced as here, in Mauritius it is allowed, you’re allowed to have a good time and a few drinks on the beach with your mates, you’re allowed to set up a camp site and go camping for a weekend with your family. Where as in South Africa it is definitely not allowed so this was all new. We met some interesting characters, a guy named Danny for invited us to stay at his home in Vacoas, a really drunk elderly-ish man named Jake who couldn’t speak much english and just kept asking us if we like Mauritius and if we like to Sega. Both these guys couldn’t be happier to share there booze, Danny would come with another glass of rum and juice and Jake with another beer (have no idea where he was getting these beers from).

Whilst we were meeting new face, others were plying traditional music, singing and dancing. Was really cool, we stood around the fire chatting to all these new faces. We chatted to a guy named James, he is a French Mauritian and because he was talking to us, everyone who didn’t know him automatically assumed he was a tourist. Really good guy.

The DJ-ing started, the food was being passed around and people were just having a great time. It was around midnight when we were physically exhausted and need to sleep. Our hosts didn’t want us to leave but we had to as we had a full day planned for the next day. But just as sad they were that we were going, they were so pleased that we came.

Was an experience to remember, so awesome! A real beach party, not by the hotels-by the locals!!!

Thank you guys! (you know who you are) It was Awesome!

Standing around the fire

Casela – Nature & Leisure Park

Since the past weekend was my birthday and anniversary, I wanted to do something to remember, an experience. So I booked for Mike and myself to do a full day of Zip Lining at the Casela Nature & Leisure Park.

Saturday morning we drove to Casela, which we often pass when going to Black River. You cant miss it, with their beautiful gardens along the road. We walked in, paid and were introduced to our guide – Jayson. He seemed very quiet and contained. We followed him though the park to go and get ready and put on our gear, where we met our main guide Chris. Really friendly and welcoming! We geared up and hopped on a bus and as we started leaving a tiny girl (lady) came running towards the bus, it was Juanita our photographer for the day. Brilliant as we had left of camera at home.  And off we went to the first zip line.

We were given our instructions and told not to be worried but just enjoy and have fun. And we did! Over and over again. 200m, 300m and then the longest zip line in the Indian Ocean 400m. Upside down, backwards, Awesome! We did quite a bit of hiking too, until we got to our last zipline for the morning which would take us to the waterfall and where we would have lunch.

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We got to the platform, took off our gear and clothes and went for a swim in the waterfall, we jumped off high ledge into the water but then it was time to zip line, more like foofie slide into the water, we had a quick demonstration by Jayson, who at this point was no longer quiet or contained, he was bubbly, chirpy and full of fun and laughter. We climbed up the volcanic rock (not so nice on the feet) and one by one zip lined into the water like a pelicans landing in a lake.

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We then sat and dried off before lunch. Chris went off to check something, so it was just the 4 of us. Juanita and Jayson gave us some Sega dancing lessons which we then practiced whilst listening to a combination of music from a mobile phone and Jaysons singing. Lots of fun was had. A few moments later, the Chefs zip lined in to cook our lunch. And boy, was it good! Fish Kebabs, Vienna kebabs, potatoes, rice (amazing rice-cant explain it), fresh bagette and fruit. It was delicious! Really out of the world, and the closest we’ve been to a braai (BBQ) since we got here.

We all finished up, got dressed, geared up and off we went. We hiked again until we reached a swinging bridge, cross the bridge and hiked again. Jayson and Juanita split off whilst we followed Chris, over rocks, under trees, through bushes etc. Chris spotted a deer, so we got a glimpse of her just for a few quick seconds-beautiful. He then showed us all the fruit bats sleeping in the trees. We hiked for a long time and me being so clumpsy, I don’t know how I didn’t fall. I tripped and slipped but I didn’t fall. We finally reached the canyon which I was a little hesitant to swim in as I knew there were eels in the water. But we did it! The water was very cold as the sun never gets to it. Whilst swimming, Jayson sang for us, we joined in from time to time.

“Hello, is it me you’re looking for?”

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We arrived at the end of the canyon, got out, got dry, had a smoke and carried on. We hiked some more. At this point my legs felt like jelly. We reached another bridge but this one was long and high, really high. And so we walked, slowly, carefully. Jayson was trying to scare us by wobbling the bridge, but just looking down is scary enough. Problem is: you have to look down to see where to put your next step!!!!

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I wont lie, I was relieved to have gotten across. We then continue on our last few zip lines and then the last one was the double zip line. Mike and I jumped off together and laughed the whole way across. Was sad it was over, but it wasn’t quite. Chris had found a hedgehog crawling through the grass. I have always loved hedgehogs but never seen one in its natural environment! Too cool. We walked back to park and the 5 five of us reflected on the days events, at this point we had become friends. And that made it even more special.

Back at the entrance of Casela we were introduced to Bob and John, 2 massive iguana’s. And there were just peacocks and parrots everywhere. Juanita did a great job! Our photos came out great! All in all- it’s a must do. 3 years ago, Mike and I came to Casela with my family and went quad biking and that was so much fun hence I decided to go back. Great team of people! Beautiful surroundings! And Loads  of fun, what more could one ask for!!!

Thank you to Chris, Jayson and Juanita! You guys were amazing! You made the day so special and so much fun!

There is something for the whole family as Casela. Something for everyone.

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Saying that, my body is still aching from the extremely active day but totally worth it!!!

www.caselayemen.mu

(+230) 452 28 28

The Goodbyes Have Begun

With time running out we made a rather rushed decision to take a drive down to the Cape to say our goodbyes to friends and family that are scattered in and around this amazing part of the country.

The decision to drive +/- 1300km there and the same back in 6 days may sound insane to some, but truth be told it works out way more cost effective, and the views along the way are just breath taking. I personally love the drive, its a way to see how vast our country really is. From the flat farmlands in the Free State, the dry arid soils of the Karoo and my absolute favorite, the windy roads that lead into the Ceres Valley (Where the air smells like apples)!!!! You finally pass through the Huguenot tunnel, which leads you to the lush, green and clean Cape Town!!

We spent our first night in Sea Point, where we were wined and dined by our amazing bunch of friends. On the morning of day 2 we went through to the tiny town of Klienmond where we settled for pretty much the rest of our stay. This town, although just a freckle on the map is just to delightful. You can be anywhere in the town and be no further than 4 blocks of the Sea or mountains!

We enjoyed good laughs here with Granny Hazel, and took her out to Durbanville to visit the cousins at Eat @ Altydgedacht eat@altydgedacht.co.za a quaint eatery on a wine farm surrounded by beautiful greenery, old wine cellars, pastel bunting and ducks!!

All in all a good trip, +/-3000km’s later. We are home, getting ready for our big move!! Nerves are building!!

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Expat Blog!

If you are looking at relocating to another country-this blog is the greatest place to gather information, chat in forums, ask questions and to meet other people. I stumbled upon it and now is one of my favourite sites. Its helpful and handy and the team behind it are so friendly and welcoming.

Having chatted to a few other expats that have moved to Mauritius, Mike and myself feel more at ease, knowing there are loads of young people from around the world, living and working there, looking to meet new people and make new friends. It kind of feels like even though we have never met these people that we are still moving into a community with a support base.

I just love the way people are looking for morning coffee buddies, squash partners, nature lovers interested in hiking, volunteers at NGO organizations, friends for their dogs and nail salons!

Expat Blog also organizes meet & greets for people in the country/area to meet each other and form friendship. Expat Blog have truly done a remarkable job! What a fantastic Idea!

Thank you Expat Blog and the team behind it! Looking forward to meeting you all!

www.expat-blog.com