Saturday morning we left early to head to the village of Marotandrazana. It’s the same village where I attended the 7 wedding celebration.
This village is around 1 1/2 hour drive, plus a ride on a ferry across the river. It normally wouldn’t take that long, but with the state of the roads, it takes a bit longer. After around the first 30 minutes, we came across a river that we have to cross. There is a ferry that cars are able to drive upon to be able to get across. They have canoes as well, for people, mopeds, bikes, etc. With the river being so low, we weren’t sure if we were really going to be able to make it across and back. Going across was fine, but we had a bit of trouble coming back. There were a couple of times that the ferry started to get stuck in the low areas, and so thankfully some of the guys from the village were with us and help push the ferry across the river. As we were getting closer to shore, those were weren’t pushing the ferry, got off and onto a canoe to get back to shore. Once we all got off, it didn’t take them much longer to reach shore again.
One goal of my time was to take photos of the church leaders with their families, which are around 10. I also wanted to get a little video footage, and photos of the village and it’ surrounding areas.
When we arrived, we went into the church and visited a little bit with some of the leaders. After a while, along with a few of the leaders, Sharone (Victor’s oldest daughter) and I went with them to the other leaders homes and take their photos. The only thing I didn’t know (and neither did Victor) was that we were to walk up and down mountains and through rivers to get to the leaders.
Over a period of 2 hours or so, we walked through the jungles of Marotandrazana stopping through a few other smaller villages. Each time we arrived at a home, they invited us in for a minute and I explained what I wanted to do. I took their photos just outside their homes, and than we continued on our journey.
One point as we were walking up a mountain, one of the leaders took off on a side trail, and soon came back with a bunch of bananas to share. And in one of the smaller villages they offered us a fresh coconut to enjoy!
Even though it was hot at times, and I was tired from walking up mountains, the views were gorgeous and it was wonderful to visit the leaders homes and the rest of their families.
One time the mountain was so steep, I almost fell backwards twice and quickly grabbed the arm of one of the leaders. There were two different times we had to forge through two small rivers. The first one we went across, I ended up stepping in the wrong spot, and my right foot ended up falling in around 4 inches of mud. I couldn’t get my foot out with the flip flop on, so took my foot off to get it out of the mud, and I had to dig around for it. Since they were so slippery wet and muddy, and the mountain was steep, I went barefoot for a while until we reach the top.
I think I will remember this day forever!