The Forgotten District
Viqueque Travel Blog› entry 17 of 86 › view all entries
After travelling through Baucau District we approached the foothills leading to the two mountains we'd seen from the other boundary of this district. We stopped at a bailey bridge over a river and the Portuguese asked me if I really wanted to go to Viqueque.
We had reached the boundary of the “Forgotten District” and the Promised Land lay just on the opposite side of the bridge.
At first I didn’t really notice any huge change in the roading, it still seemed as bad as it had been since we left. But rest assured it is in worse shape and after a few more kilometers I could see it. The reason no money is spent on the area is twofold; firstly because this is Fanatil Country and that is not the political party that leads the country at the moment.
Secondly, there is not much out this way, the people and the lifestyle is simple. Most are poor families surviving by subsistence farming and that means they don't have money to travel, unless by foot. Therefore roads are more like footpaths.
When we reached
Kiwi house was a house rented by NZers over the past few years and had always been passed from one lot to the next but when Tuituia 7 staff went down to Uatolari the house was passed to the Portuguese. Two months on it retains its name.
The two Portos were talking all night about how they are soon to leave Vqq for a job with the prosecutor’s office. Bear was considering a move from Uatolari to the Vqq investigator’s office and the Kiwis return to this nest. It seems that it’s one out �" all out of Uatolari.
I was still struggling with my Traffic job application. I was tired of waiting for this mission to get started and now it seemed I had another wait whilst the UN decided my fate about this. I would be pleased to have it all behind me so I could settle down to business at last.
As well as the Portos and we 2 kiwis, there were two others enjoying the bbq. Two Aussies: Dave and Phil. Dave was all set for a serious night on the beers but the rest of us were happy with a few each and a good fry up of steak and chips. Perfect!
The Portos showed me where I was to crash for the night and explained the workings of a TL bathroom. Small pot for half flush. Bucket for full flush. Ladle for showering. Seemed pretty easy except for my clothes stuffed into roll bags without rhyme or reason.
Bear suggested we leave early in the morning and complete our ablutions when we got to Uatolari. I was down with that. At least I’d have more time to sort my kit when I finally had everything out of the bags and into a wardrobe.
For now I found my torch, toilet bag and a sleep-sheet so I was set for the night.
The bed the Portos offered me was shrouded in a mozzie net so I sorted that out and settled down to sleep.
I was out like a light but the light kept coming on. At first I awoke at about 1.30am regretting the few beers I’d had earlier. Torch in hand I went down for a half flush.
The rest of the night’s sleep was broken into 45 minute segments by horny roosters announcing their condition. Until this very night I had always associated a cock’s crow with dawn but no, the feathered fiend outside my open window was in a constant state of arousal and trumpeted the whole night through �"set your stopwatch to it!
But if that wasn’t bad enough, it’s a sad truth that the main income for TL families is cock fighting so every household has at least one prize fighting rooster and if one crowed for a bit, then they all did. Every 45 mins the whole town of
That would set the dogs off.
Then finally at about 6am I heard a chicken tuk, tuk, tuking, around the yard and I figured I would finally get a rest from the rooster outside my window at least! But then the dawn chorus kicked in. Roosters, dogs, hens, lizards, cars, trucks, people.
At 6.19am someone struck the old church bell and reminded me that it was Sunday. The one good thing about that for me was that I had less than an hour until I was due to rise and complete my ablutions.
As I lay there thinking about the night I’d had, and the drive, and the exciting experiences I’d already enjoyed, I was delighted by the voices of the church choir wafting through my window. Nice!