Big Willy’s

We had driven past Big Willy’s a number of times and we thought we’d go check it out and watch the Euro 2012 final there. Mike called to book us a table whilst walking back to the apartment to get ready. We decided we’d have some dinner there before the soccer. We got dressed and ready and hopped in the car for our 10-15 min drive which ended up taking 2 hours! Due to the festival being such a big event, the police were still trying to redirect traffic out of Flic en Flac. We called to say we would be late and instead of being there at 8pm, we arrived around 9:45pm. That was seriously some of the worst traffic that I have ever sat in.

Finally when we got to Big Willy’s we were welcomed by the Euro 2012 promo girls at the entrance and found that we had the best seats in the house! A table set for two right in front of the huge projector screen.

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Two tables away from us, there were 3 men doing a radio broadcast about the Soccer. There was two guys chatting away in French about the Euro 2012 and they were from Radio 1 (R1). They had banners up and everything.

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Whilst ordering our drinks and deciding what to eat, the promo girls came around and painted your supporting teams flag on your face.  Even the atmosphere felt competitive and it was a good even split between Italy and Spain Supporters.

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Our food arrived and was delicious, Mike had like a creamy chicken potjie, kind of like chicken a la king with veggies and rice. Was so good and homey, even the presentation was awesome as it came in a little potjie pot! I had the squid, wasn’t what I thought I was going to get, in my mind I kind of thought I was getting Calamari rings. Never assume. I got a big piece of squid, which I’ve never really had before with a side salad and fries. Interesting but very good. For dessert we had a fantastic warm chocolate tart and a chocolate mousse and cappacino’s to wash it down! Yum! It was the perfect way to end the meal!

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Whilst eating, between course and coffees we watched Spain play like champs and the energy in Big Willy’s was unreal. People were shouting, clapping, whistling, you name it. Took me back to 2010 during the Fifa World Cup. The atmosphere was so festive and energetic that our time at Big Willy’s was well worth the 2 hour traffic jam.

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And the cherry on top – Spain won!

What a way to end an awesome day!

We’ll definitely be going back to Big Willy’s. If you’re a meat lover and want great friendly service, it’s the place to go!

Big Willy’s for the win! 

http://bigwillys.restaurant.mu/

(230) 483 7400

The Flic en Flac Festival

On Sunday, after a swim in the sea and a chill on the beach, we headed back to the apartment to go and check the Flic en Flac festival. As we reached the turn we came to a halt due to the incredible amount of traffic trying to get into Flic en Flac, we sat in the hot car and waited and edged forward slowly but surely. Most roads had been blocked off so all traffic was being diverted through the side roads where people were also parking and hundreds of people were walking. It took us a 1 hour to do 4.5km to our apartment. Once we got back we heard the people gathering on the coastal road ready for the parade. A quick shower, quick change of clothes and we were ready to walk the streets of the Flic en Flac Festival.

We walked, without even realizing how far we had actually gone. The streets were packed, people were crammed onto balconies of the apartments that lined the streets, teens were sitting on top of bus stops, whilst the kiddies were placed safely on their daddies shoulders. People were walking, drinking, smoking, dancing, eating, laughing, wearing wigs and masks. The air was full of celebration.

The Flic en Flac festival is to boast tourism and the country of Mauritius. There were floats of all sorts that came down the road, generally followed by a band or dancers. The parade opened up with Brazilian dancers that had specially been flown in from Brazil. The costumes were unbelievable-for a moment we could have been at the Rio Carnival.  We also saw Miss Mauritius, Miss Reunion, Miss England and Miss UK, each on their own float. There were a few Disney floats, with people dressed as characters. There was fire breathing, Sega Dancing, Marching bands and crazy costumes. Some floats were sponsored by a Hotel, Restaurant or Club.  Each float was themed: Pirates, Princesses, Under the Sea, Africa, Design, Parisian, Chinese, Mauritian. Most floats had a bunch of balloons attached to them in the Mauritian colours.

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A helicopter was circling and filming the event and everyone on the street was waving. The vibe was so festive and exciting and you could almost feel it running through your body. It was so awesome and something we’d never quite seen before.

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Before we knew it the festival was over, they ended it with Brazilian dancers strutting their stuff done the street. The people started to disperse but the party wasn’t over. People were partying in the streets, on the beach and in the restaurants and bars along the road.

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We walked to the beach, and since it was my birthday, my grandmother had wrapped up some Christmas cake and a candle for us to celebrate as how can you have a birthday without birthday cake. So we sat on the beach, lit the candle, blew it out, sang happy birthday and ate the cake whilst watching the sunset.

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Mafiozzo

After our day at Casela we went to meet our new friend Jayson at Mafiozzo, an outdoor bar/restaurant that has a real island look to it. Everything is made from wood, the high tables, stools and fencing around it. We drive past it quite often, and always have a look in when we are going to the Spar. I really felt like pizza, Mike really felt like beer and we both really wanted to go there. So we did.

Mafiozzo has a really chilled out vibe and friendly service. My favourite thing about this place is there menu. The names of there meals are just too random. From “Blowjob Breakfast” to a “Tax Haven Pizza”. We had the Tax Haven Pizza and shared it amoungst the 3 of us. It was so good, with a nice crispy thing base and delicious topping we were ready for the night ahead.

Mafiozzo is my new best friend!

Go check it out, in the Pasadena Centre in Flic en Flac.

http://dismoiou.fr/p/mus/flic-en-flac/i1tKyW/mafiozo

We totally got lost in conversation that we didn’t take any pic – will post at a later stage!

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