Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Writing on the wall or the thin red line ?

With the visit of Sarkozy a fading memory - unlike the hundreds of flags that still adorn his route to the hotel - I was going to moan about something else. Tags, or graffiti as it be known in the anglophone world. Tags are everywhere, rather like free t-shirts with banal sycophantic political slogans. Those that are jolly I fail to understand (see above) and those written in English display a thorough understanding of the vernacular - "fuck the police"

However, being of a certain age means that I moan about everything I can't or won't do and I must say that Sarkozy spoke a reasonable amount of sense during his "best wishes" monologue. Except ...

Things may fall apart, but they also have a strange way of coming together. Haiti is suffering and has been suffering since its inception. Haiti was a French colony - yes the place where certain French historians insist the "gas chamber" was invented, obviously not wanting to be outdone the Brits invented the concentration camp, so don't feel too smug. Réunion is a French "department" - please bear in mind the difference between a colony and a department.

Haiti suffers more today because of its history and because it is poor. Reunion is rich because it is a French department, is this why there is no viable independence movement?

No one really talks about independence on Reunion but Sarkozy wanted to preempt any such thoughts during his speech :

"Avec une seule ligne rouge dont je n'accepterai jamais qu'elle soit franchie, celle de l'indépendance"

. "L'Outre-Mer est français et restera français".

Sounds all very nineteenth century colonialism to me. Makes one wonder what one would think had any other head of state uttered the same phrases - Britain with Mauritius for example ?

It is said that when the sun sets below the horizon of the Indian Ocean on a clear day one can perceive, for a split second, an illuminating green line. I can imagine where the red line of Sarkozy leads, but where is that green line going ...

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Sarkozy arrives for supper ...

... and what value do you place upon your freedom. That of a blue t-shirt ?

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Good news bad news ...

Tis not often that I have some cheery news from the isle slowly sinking under the weight of its human population and attending detritus. Well, I haven't ...

But Kew Gardens have. Apparently, one of their researchers on the island has discovered a very benevolent sorta cricket that instead of devouring plants (orchids in this case), it pollinates them. Now if such wonders can be found on a small island crammed with 800,000 greedy souls what more rests in the great out there beyond ? Even the BBC found it interesting ! It is strangely named the Raspy Cricket and a scientific name has yet to be found - Criketus Lastus Hopeus ?

Oh, why such cynicism ? Well, it might have something to do with the fact that during the night of Sunday last fast clouds of deltamethrine descended upon the isle in order to combat the "nasty" mossie. Of course, insecticide is not selective and as this is highly toxic too all but warm blooded (read cold hearted) species there may not be a lot of hope for the Raspy rascal.

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

So just what is the volcano up to ?

Actually, it is still huffing and a puffing but I haven't the time to go and observe. Darn ! So, if youse are wondering what it is like and if the rain has held off long enough here are a few snaps taken by the OVPF :

Sunday, January 03, 2010

Because the night belongs to ...

The Piton de la Fournaise, or Kalle's Mount for those sensitive enough to live in a pathetic alternative reality, erupted yesterday afternoon and sent a dying fag-end's plume of smoke into the afternoon sky. By evening the glowing butt was rolling around the crater and hiding from the aging moon.

The night was cold, but relatively clear, the walk long and the lava field an uncomfortable pillow.

As always, daybreak is a long time coming, the glowing embers of the nights revelries transform into a curtain suspended over the volcano awaiting our applause before she bow's out ...

Silence. Are things really that quiet ?

Of course the volcano has been "shut" again so credit to the OVPF for the photo above.

hot rock mantis