I love the way the soft Malagasy winter sun brushes my cheek. In Chicago, this would be a glorious spring day, but for me it is pure joy. Travel to Madagascar is complicated at best, let alone trying to get to my daughter, Caitlin’s remote Peace Corps site in Mandritsara. I ask my driver if he ever takes people to Mandritsara. He looks at me politely and says, ‘No Madame…just you’. Caite met me in Antsohihy, so she could travel the last leg of the 3 1/2 day trip with me.
I was a little shocked when we pulled up to Caite’s house. It looked like a cyclone hit it…oh wait, a cyclone did hit it this past February. The spindly sticks that had once been her fence are haphazardly strewn around what was once her yard and garden. To top it off, I watched the neighbor drive a zebu pulled cart in the narrow space between Caite’s house and the clinic. The zebu caught one of his long horns in one of the few standing sections of the fence and proceeded to pull it from its unsteady post. C’est la vie in Mandritsara.