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Andavadoaka Travel Blog

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The distance between Salari and Toliara is 70km. The trip took nine hours. Most of the time at least twice as many people as seats were somehow crammed on top of baskets full of tomatoes or fish, live chickens and cardboard boxes and suitcases and bags and bottles and everything. The cargo and passengers changed at every stop, placing infants of varying ages in my lap and soon convincing Arnaud that standing in the aisle was the more comfortable way to travel. One child I held for a few hours kept coughing and I was terribly worried that he would expire from the consumption or something and I would be blamed and torn to pieces by all the passengers, united in righteous anger. Well not really but that’s the sort of idle mind game that somehow made the trip go by without ill effect on my mood. It was definitely an experience. In large parts the road was non-existent, the bus threatening to drop down a ravine into the sea, branches whipped in through the glass-less windows like nine-tailed cats, everybody was soaked in sweat and sticking to each other, but none was irate or unpleasant. When we reached Efati, we were ecstatic because we knew we had only twenty more kilometers to cover. Those twenty kilometers took four hours…

Eventually we did arrive, found a taxi cab, checked in at the hotel Italo and Nina had recommended, had pizza at the best Italian place in town (of which there strangely are many), and passed out dead tired.

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Andavadoaka
photo by: tpuell