And she calls it modern....
Trip Start Feb 24, 2005
21Trip End Jul 23, 2005
Because of a late start, we spent one night in Moramanga, about an hour from Andasibe. Here I rode my first rickshaw (called a "pousse-pousse")
At last we made it to Andasibe, or at least Lacy's little corner of it. We hauled our things up a steep ravine that glistened from the morning's showers. I was instantly impressed that Lacy had hauled water in buckets up that slope every day for two years. At the top of the hill, her house sits among five or six others, all wood. Most of the homes have a separate outbuilding for cooking, and since the cooking is done basically over an open fire, smoke pours out of the gap between the wall and the roof. Chickens wander everywhere, but they converge and sprint like little cartoons when someone tosses scraps out a door or window. Sometimes they even follow you to the latrine, ever hopeful. Paths thick with mud wind between the weathered houses and overgrown foliage. One side of Lacy's house has been practically devoured by leaves the size of a not-so-small child. Enormous banana plants shade every house. This lushness comes at a price, but it's a small one; I've loved staring out the unscreened, unglassed windows in 75-degree weather, watching the rain roil the red earth.
By far the coolest thing about Lacy's house, though, is this: Sitting at the table in the early morning, nibbling rice for breakfast, we can hear an abbreviated whalesong soaring out from the forest--the call of the Indri, reaffirming every morning its place in the world.