Today, on our way to Anja, a ring-tail lemur preserve, we stopped at a market. We got to see how markets are different in Madagascar than in America. The first thing that I noticed was that it actually wasn’t that different that markets you could find at home. There were stalls with people selling fruits, vegetables, grains, and meats. Although they sold some things that were different it still had the same kind of feel. We saw that they didn’t just sell food there they also sold clothing, electronics, kitchen supplies and animals. Something that amazed me was how far people would travel to come to this market. We saw people walking along the road for miles carrying things that they would later sell at the market. We saw women carrying ducks on there heads, young boys driving zebu and pigs along the edge of the road and we saw elderly women carrying grains or clothing along the side of the road.
We stopped at two factories, a paper and a silk factory before making in to the preserve. They weren’t factories per say, they were basically open huts where they would do all the work by hand. The paper factory was cool because they pound the plants into pulp and then they shape it into paper. They then decorate the paper by hand, using freshly picked flowers and after that they dry in the sun and are able to be sold two months later. The silk factory was also cool because they do everything by hand. They prepare the silk by hand and then weave the silk into beautiful scarves and other things by hand.
The Anja Preserve was amazing. We got to see our first Madagascar lemurs there. We hiked for a few miles and reached a dense forest where we saw the lemurs. It was amazing how close they would let you get. We were probably about five feet away from them and they didn’t seem bothered at all. We then hiked through the mountains and almost fell off cliffs multiple times t it was worth it because we saw some amazing views of Madagscar from the mountains.