Wednesday, September 20, 2006

flash, bang, thssspppp!

Judging by the above photo of talc grenades found in the last remaining coastal forest of Etang Salé one would be forgiven for thinking that I was going to have a rant about litter, the military and the general abuse of the environment. No, I am saving that for later.

The flash-bangs are merely a symbol of the current state of tourism on the island and the pathetic attempts of the administration to promote the isle - or to be more cynical to profit from the millions of euros being pumped in to advertising and the like. Last week saw an "exposition" of La Réunion at Paris which cost the tax-payer some 330,000€. Some 150 persons were flown to Paris to sell samosas and gyrate a bit. The result was that the event attracted almost 2000 visitors, 80% of whom were ex-pat Reunionese! We are also infomed that the region et al are to be pumping 3 million euros into a billboard and internet advertising campaign in order to attract tourists after the Chik-Shark fiasco of this past year.

I am not too sure if the administration is really serious or is just looking to find jobs and profit for its lackeys and relatives. Where does all this money go? Can I have some? Still, it would seem that some are content to hijack this guilded publicity campaign by dreaming up even more disastrous scenarios. The Quotidien yesterday published on its front page a "report" that the island will be hit by a giant tsunami one day (tomorrow, next week, ten years etc etc) when the volcano falls apart and we shall all be swept to oblivion, or beyond. Seemingly, if the chikungunya doesn't kill you, the sharks will and failing that the good Lord will rip asunder the Earth and those that aren't to be swallowed into the very bowels of hell will be drowned...

...shit! I'm off to build an ark. Mind you it won't need to be very big coz there do not seem to be many creatures left on the island. No wonder I thought that Butlins was boring!

Flash Bang? If one is looking for a reason to visit the island and a bit of publicity the biggest noise is the island itself...

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