Well finally – after feeling like it would never happen – I’m here in Mauritius…jetlagged I think for a little while – it was the yawning all day that gave it away.

Arrived at the airport and through immigration with only a minor hiccup of trying to explain my relationship to P and the reason for my visit…to work…I really didn’t think it was that hard to understand. Customs was a breeze…in fact so much so – it helped that there was no-one at the desk…

Then straight into Port Louis to sort out paperwork for my work permit and bank account…P did the tourist guide thing for gastonomists – showing me all the best places to eat…then we headed “home”. How quickly I have come to call it that…

I was just so excited to see the two girls when I got there…Holly came out to the car – obviously the past 3 weeks have not affected her because my greeting was as if I’d seen her only a few hours before. Ivy on the other hand – the scaredy cat – was well ensconced under the bed in the spare room but moved more quickly than I’ve seen for a while when I spoke to her to come out & purr in my face. Since then she has been my constant bed companion – ok – she sleeps on the floor like Holly most of the time which just confirms my thought that she thinks she’s a dog.

Met Dave & Judy for “welcome” champagne later in the day – and Kali, their rottie who just seemed to want to either lick or chew my fingers – which was really lovely of them and then another of the “gang”, Mark. Then the next day it was up & out driving around seeing things or people for all of us – starting with the doctors for our medicals. Then into Port Louis again, to the bank, to see the main port etc…

Have now been given the all clear by the medical crew – nothing on my lungs, nothing in my poo, nothing in my wee, nothing bad in my blood…Son 1’s all clear too – quite interesting comparing the results…Now just waiting, waiting, waiting after delay, delay, delay & stuff up, stuff up, stuff up to get my work permit – which was supposed to be done by Tuesday…now it looks like Friday except of course there is Xmas in the middle so…maybe, if I’m lucky, the following week, which means I can’t get my freight boxes until then either…bugger…

Have managed to check out a few garden centres – plants like we have a home are quite cheap – eg crotons in large pots for AUD6 then there are other things that are not so cheap – like nice decorative pots…some of the crappiest, plastic Tuscany looking but badly done and not very strong feeling – same size as ficus at home – for about AUD35…

Driving here is mental…they pass no matter what the lines show – all the road rules are pretty much the same as Oz…except the passing thing…apparently the cops do book for speeding but everyone obviously can’t read the speed signs because 30 seems to mean at least 60 (oh unless you’re a bus passing a truck on a blind corner or a hill…then you slow to 30 to pass). People on bikes – motor & pedal – ride as if they are still suffering the indulgences of the night before, swerving all over the road…but hey, just blast the horn, speed up and pass them…there are no side parts to the road – it just seems to drop off the side so sometimes the passing can be quite hair-raising…I think they built the roads to the exact width of 3 cars with an inch to spare…funny tho’ I haven’t seen any accidents although plenty of dings…

There are some gorgeous little birds here – beautifully coloured little finches that fly all over the place… I am going to set up a bird bath/feeder with rice to encourage them in the yard…Ivy is no threat – she spends all day sleeping under the spare bed on the cold tiles then ventures out when it cools down outside – is still to scared to wander around much outside but that’s good in my mind.

Holly is taking a little while to learn about the gate…every local person shits themselves coming here cos they all think she’s a big vicious dog…a good thing to let them keep thinking.

And now it’s three days since I arrived and I feel very comfortable here…here in this house but also here in Mauritius. I was always joking about how some people call Mauritius a holiday destination but I’ll call it home – and now I can see that as a real possibility.

L x