Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Malagasy shell game

When we got off the plane in Mahajanga we were met by a number of Scouters. As soon as we got outside, the Scouters were calling for us to hurry up. I thought they were calling that cars were there, but no they were calling “marching band”! Man it was sooooo cool!!! The welcome to Mahajanga was spectacular, more Scouts came out and we all started dancing and exchanged flags. It was one of the greatest experiences ever. After that, we all drove via car to a property owned by Father Alfredo’s family. The place was beautiful and full of life.

 The next day we went out to explore a few caves nearby. While we were there we met two local boys named Abraham and Franco. Abraham was 7 and Franco was 14- the same age as I am. What was really weird is that even though he was the same age as me, Franco was at least a foot shorter than me. I found out afterwards that this was from malnutrition.

The caves were pretty cool, too, but I think Franco and Abraham’s game with the shells was the coolest part. They each had about five seashells and they would put one down and the other person would throw his seashell at the one that was put down. When a shell was completely destroyed another would be put down and the last person with a shell would win. It was very interesting to watch. Even with no money or T.V., they were still able to find ways to have fun.

 After having explored the caves, we went down to meet Scouts who were from France and working on a project near Mahajanga. We met up with them on the road to their project site. It took a long time to get there, but it was interesting to see another group of Scouts doing the same thing as us. After we had a light lunch, we headed back to the property and changed before hitting the beach (on the Mozambique Channel).

-Written by Ben (1st Strathroy, Tri-Shores Council)

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