. OnHiatus.com > Journal 1 > Day Index > Journal Entry: November 21, 1999

Sunday, November 21, 1999
Toliara, Madagascar
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Map
Toliara, Madagascar:
Latitude: 23° 21' 14" South
Longitude: 43° 40' 57" East
Altitude: 2569 feet
From Seattle: 12442 miles
Lodging: Hotel - Comme Chez Soi

Map
Today's Travel:
Country: Madagascar
Region: Southern
Weather: Sunny

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Map
Trip Stats to Date:
Day: 955
Linear Dist: 189153
Countries Visited: 63
Regions Visited: 246
More stats...
Hotels: 307
Friends / Family: 231
Camping: 120
Hostels: 220
Transit: 63
Other Lodging: 13
Beers: 3386
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Journal Entry:
Got up before six to catch my taxi south to La Mangrove - where I'm diving. I didn't drink that much last night but I am definitely not feeling to happy - probably more the lack up sleep. The ride is better that the one to Ifaty, but not much and I'm not in a Land Rover this time. When I get to La Mangrove I was informed that there would be no dives because of the visibility but I'd been booked on the tourist excursion. I was not happy as they had tried to book me on this when I first tried to arrange a dive. It smelled a lot like it was setup. Especially since I had spent almost all my local currency on the taxi down - I was to pay for my dive in US$, and they were going to provide me with a ride back. After much ranting and raving they offered to exchange some dollars at 4,500 per - the normal rate is about 6,300! When they said it was no problem - I could pay for the excursion in dollars - I lost it and started walking. It was only 10km to the tarred road and I knew I'd have no problem finding a cheap ride from there. Unfortunately it's so brutally hot here. I ended up catching a ride almost immediately. I negotiated the fare based on the agreement that the driver would take me to a hotel to change money (it's Sunday so there aren't any banks open). Back in Toliara we went by two hotels, a furniture maker, and the central market trying to change money. Eventually he agreed to take US$ and drove me back to my hotel. Of course after the extra driving and because he had to take small bills he wanted more - given my mood, he didn't get it.

It's still early morning and still Sunday - there is nothing to do in this town - especially today. I wrote mail for a while, then took a much needed four hour nap. When I woke up I tried to go for a walk, but it was so hot I gave up before even making it out of the hotel gate. I spent the afternoon laying under the ceiling fan working on my journal and then my current programming project. When diner time came around I got distracted and by the time I went out realizing that I hadn't eaten today everything was closed (just after nine). Even the street venders were pretty meager I ended up with a baguette of bread and water. Not the best day - I really am cursed when it comes to seeing the wildlife here!


Related Sites:
US State Department Consular Information Sheets: Madagascar
CIA World Fact Book: Madagascar

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