A Seychellois Definition of Antique

Many might know that the Seychelles have been populated since the end of the 18th century. And craftsmen built some beautiful furniture in those days. Not much of it is around anymore (and the few items that are, are firmly in the hands of the families who originally commissioned them), so I was really excited to see an ad on Seybay boldly entitled "Antique Furniture". Fingers trembling with excitement, I clicked on the advertisement.

Back With a Vengeance

Well, I'm finally online again.

I visited Intelvision a couple of days before I moved and they assured me that I would be online within a week. I was pleasantly surprised, as things don't usually move that quickly over here. I paid in advance for both the reallocation and the monthly internet fee.

Then I went about my moving and waited.

Don't Have to Set Up a Tent After All!

After looking for a place to rent for over three months, I've finally found a house. As usual, it was pretty last minute with one and a half weeks to go before my moving out date.

But what a house! Yes, I am paying a fortune for it (and, of course, some of it in Euros), but it is huge. I am now the proud to-be-renter of a "villa" with 4-bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, 2 living rooms, a study and an atelier. I've never had so much space in my life and I'm sharing it with only my two kids. I fear we'll be wandering the halls like lost souls in space. My daughter is worried about my son and I being lonely next year when she'll leaves to study abroad and says that I need to find a man by then. It's a novel idea; get a man to fill a house ...

The atelier is ideal, because I've long wanted space to do Reiki and other "spiritual life coaching" in and now I no longer have any excuse to put it off. So apart from the excitement of moving, I'm also getting worked up about the business I'll be starting.

There is no internet connection in the house, so I might be offline for a couple of weeks until Intelvision sets up my connection. I have pre-posted the Wordless Wednesdays and hope to post something inbetween from the internet cafe.

That's if I ever come down the hill. My only regret is that I'll be leaving Bel Ombre and moving to Glacis. Visto Do Mar Estate is a pretty swanky area, but I shall miss the atmosphere of Bel Ombre and the proximity to the beach.

Thank you to all my well-wishers; I am sure the "good vibes" really helped.

Off to new shores! Or hills, as that may be ...

Ingrid Betancourt Swaps One Jungle for Another

It seems everybody who is somebody feels the need to visit Seychelles at some point or another. We've had Brad Pitt, Prince William and maybe even Jim Morrison gracing our shores with their luminance.

Now, Ingrid Betancourt is on a (much-needed I'm sure) holiday here after her 6 year ordeal in the Colombian jungle. It turns out that she lived here for two years in the early Eighties and had the dubious pleasure of giving birth to one of her children in Victoria Hospital. And, according to this article, even indulged in a spot of wet-nursing whilst here.

Sarcasm aside, I truly wish the poor woman has a good holiday here with her kids. If anyone needs the peace of Seychelles, she does.

Who next, I wonder? Obama? He seems to be as keen on indulging his wanderlust as the last Pope...

Desperately Seeking Rental Accommodation

Just like many others on this island, I'm looking for a house or flat to rent in the north of Mahé.

My landlord is tearing the house down in the beginning of August so that he can build executive flats to rent out in Euros. There is hardly an owner on the island these days who is willing to rent out in Seychelles Rupees. This is largely thanks to the developers of Eden Island and some of the new luxury hotels who are more than happy to shell out their foreign exchange to accommodate their staff.

What, I wonder, will happen when these people finish building their own houses (as is planned)? The bubble is bound to burst then and all these renters will be stuck with their over-priced apartments and houses.

I put an ad on Seybay, our local online classifieds site and got a phone call from someone today who is renting out a 3-bedroom flat in Beau Vallon for Euros 1000. On the black market (which is how everbody calculates these days) that is SR 20'000. I could manage Euros 500 if pushed, but even that is a ridiculous amount.

Two years ago, you could get a nice 3-bedroom house in North Mahé for SR 6000 per month. That's bad enough considering that the average wage here is SR 3'500 a month. This is why most single people stay with their parents until well into their 30s.

Sleeping on the beach is dangerous these days, so I don't even have that option.

I live in hope of a miracle...

New Online Community for Seychellois and Friends

I found this site a few days ago and just signed up. It's still in beta, so it's too early to tell whether it will take off and how many people are actually going to participate. So far, 11 male members (sic) and 27 female members have signed up.

This is their tagline: Join our online community for both Seychellois and international friends of the Seychelles! Fill in your profile, upload photos, discuss, buy, sell and / or trade items in our Forum, chat and more!

And this is from their FAQ: Do people actually meet on your site? Do they ever get married? Thousands of people meet on our site daily and go on to date and start relationships. We've also had hundreds of marriages across many borders. To see for yourself, check the site for real stories of real connections.

Umm, thousands out of the 11 guys and 27 gals?

The confirmation email upon registration is not immediate. I'm still waiting for it. Still, the slowness gives it that certain Seychellois touch...

Sunset Video from Beau Vallon Beach

The sunset is like that practically every day here, yet I can never get enough. This one's for all you guys out there who don't get to see it daily.

Wish I could swim that fast...

Jim Morrison Alive and Kicking in the Seychelles?

The Daily Mail interviewed the Doors keyboard player Ray Manzarek and this is what he had to say: 'I often wonder if his death has been an elaborate charade,' and 'Jim was a restless soul, always looking for something else in life, and even six years of success - and excess - with The Doors hadn't been enough for him. A year earlier, he had shown me a brochure for the Seychelles and said: "Wouldn't this be the perfect place to escape to if everyone believed you were dead?'
I'll keep my eyes peeled for an old doped up white guy. It would help if I had one of those nifty FBI aging programmes.

If you're reading this Jim, get in touch. It would be a gas to hang out at your pad. Far out, man. Groovy, baby.

Maybe Elvis is here, too...

The Coral Strand Hotel is Open Again - Sort of...

Contrary to everybody's expectations, the Coral Strand reopened as planned on 1st July. It's not open to the public yet and they have a total of 2 hotel guests. Some staff are working and the small kitchen is open to cater for the lonely guests. I don't envy them at all. Imagine going on holiday to a place touted as paradise and having to live in a hotel where the renovations are still ongoing.

So many people have come to this blog searching for information on what is happening at the Coral Strand this week, that I felt I had to do my duty. Intrepid reporter that I am, I snuck up this afternoon to take some pictures.

This is the front entrance of the newly 4-star rated hotel. The rooms are still as tiny as ever, far too small for a 4-star. And what is that thing on the left? A gatehouse of sorts to keep all us plebians out?

I can't see that anything has been changed at the bistro, except that it's obviously closed. No lunch or tea whilst gazing at the sea for the hotel guests.

Nor any lounging around the pool, unless the highlight of the holiday is watching the builders doing whatever it is they're doing.

I suppose the guests could always sit in this weird pavillion thingy whilst watching the labourers. Wonder why they replaced the lovely thatched roof with this circus tent and chairs reminiscent of the 1970s?

Is this one of the lonely guests? I took this picture during what are usually happy hours at the Coral Strand, so perhaps it's just some lost soul looking for a beer and a bit of cheer at the still closed pool bar. No joy for him, either way...

I feel really sorry for those poor guests. The management was very shortsighted in thinking the renovations would be done in two months (everybody told them it wasn't going to be possible in the Seychelles), but I reckon they were too greedy to pass up on the few bucks they could make. It's sheer irresponsible to take in clients and charge them the newly hefty prices for a lousy holiday. They should have moved them to another hotel and paid the difference.

I wonder how many other poor suckers are arriving this week for their holiday in hell...

UPDATE: Food Crisis? It's Napa Land here all the way.

UPDATE: I've noticed many visitors to this blog still read this post, although it's from 2008. Do we still have a food crisis here in Seychelles?

I don't believe we have. Oh, of course our supermarkets are not as full as those in Europe, but we're doing pretty ok. We even have a mini local supermarket chain called Kanu's that is very well stocked. They import a brand called Emborg, which I strongly suspect is EU overproduction for export (but, hey, it's still good stuff).

Prices are higher than ever, though...

Night Lights of Cities around the World

I got this in my email today. Enjoy.

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil


London, England

Niagra Falls, U.S.A.

Paris, France

Victoria, Seychelles

Too often true, thanks to all the power cuts ...

The Tourist Police Strike Again!

Once again, the recently formed Tourist Police were able to prevent a major crime from occurring in the Seychelles...

A friend of mine was on the beach at Beau Vallon earlier today. She has two daughters under the age of ten who were playing, as children are wont to do, with a small ball. They were stopped from their harmless tossing the ball to each other by two ladies from the new Tourist Police. Granted, they apologized for having to stop the children from playing. They were only doing their duty and were being watched by another Tourist Police Officer who cruises around in a car making sure the cops are doing their duty. (Sound familiar? Shades of 1939? 1984? Or, more locally, 1983?) It seems it's now against the law to play any kind of ball on the beach. The officers were a little unsure upon being questioned if it was allowed to play frisbee. One said yes, the other said no. But then again, neither of them knew what a frisbee was.

This incident didn't even occur in front of a hotel, but a good kilometer down the beach on the "local side" by the pizzeria.

A couple of other kids I know were stopped from kicking a football around on the beach, and the local evening football games which are a Seychellois tradition have been stopped. Even tourists aren't allowed to play ball anymore. I haven't really seen any tourist being stopped, but there aren't many tourists here now. Let's see what happens when the "hordes" arrive with their children in July.

This tourist certainly wasn't stopped from camping even though she describes two Tourist Police Officers being around. "The funniest part about the whole trip was the
strange reactions we received when telling the local people we were
camping. Apparently people don't really camp in the Seychelles." That's because they aren't allowed to. Camping is, and has been for a long time, illegal in the Seychelles.

Well-behaved dogs with collars and in company of their owners are no longer allowed on the beach without a leash. The owners are told to leave the beach or face penalties. (I was with a friend a couple of months ago, when we were very rudely told off by a couple of officers puffed up with self-importance.) The beach dogs that hang around the hotels and actually harass tourists are left to their own devices. They, it would seem, are not a problem.

Basically, the idea of a tourist police patrolling the beaches is not a bad idea. Seychelles is not as free of crime as it once was and there have been a few incidents of bags being stolen off the beach and even a couple of muggings. Here's a happy story where the criminal was caught and the bag returned to the tourist a day later.

I just wish they'd concentrate on turning Seychelles into a crime-free haven and not a fun-free haven.

National Day Came and Went Without a Boom

According to the Nation: A large crowd attended a military parade yesterday at Stad Linite that was part of activities to mark the 15th National Day celebrations.

I wasn't part of that large crowd. I abhor the pomp of military parades and brass band music, which were the major offerings of the day. Even deep down inside, I feel no atavistic urges to start twirling a baton to the tune of a trumpet.

I didn't attend the street party the evening before either. Drunken roisterers spoiling for a fight and pissing all over the place without paying any attention to passersby are not my thang at all. I worry about their aim in their intoxicated state and have no wish to be anywhere near.

The weather was so miserable that I stayed at home for most of the day anyway. I did venture out in the late afternoon for a drive around town to view the new monument to commemorate the 15th National Day.

Ohmigod, it's a flagpole. I am suitably impressed ...

Vroom, Vroom. Let the Friday Night Games Begin

On Friday nights the danger-loving intrepid young men of Seychelles meet up at Docklands for some seriously dangerous street racing. Young ladies between the ages of 18 and 20 are cordially invited to watch the daredevils as they race all of 500m from Docklands to the Supersave roundabout.

Do these young ladies get invited for a pizza at Docklands after having to watch the young guns race up and down the street all evening? Nope. It's straight home after the evening's entertainment and off to bed (usually alone) for the testosterone-driven lads.

Here's a little video so you can join in the fun and games...

Evo - Click here for more amazing videos

And It Ain't Just the Food Prices: Living Costs in Seychelles

Many people have come to this blog looking for the living costs in the Seychelles. You don't really want to know ...

But if you must know, read on for some examples. I take no responsibility for any cardiovascular episodes. The first price is the approximate price in June 2006. The second is the price now in June 2008.

Powdered milk, medium size tin was Rs 30, is now between Rs 70 and 90, depending on the brand. (And forget about Nido; everyone here has forgotten what that is.)

Butter, 250 g, salted, was Rs 4.50, is now Rs 18 for a pack of Anchor. Last week I paid Rs 19 for 125 g of Italian butter. And that's when it's available at all...

Rice, 1 kg, good quality, was Rs 6, is now Rs 18.

Meat, fish and chicken are still reasonable. I bought a pork tenderloin at Supersave for approx. Rs 30, local chicken is still under Rs 30 for a packet of drumsticks or thighs and the price of fish depends on the monsoon as it always did in Seychelles.

The petrol prices rose again by Rs 4 /l last week.

Flats or houses are going for around Rs 6-8000 for a three bedroom house. That's if you can find one at all in Rs; everyone wants Forex these days and there are many "executive-style" places cropping up all over the island going for Euros 1200 for two bedrooms.

The official exchange rate is Rs 12 to the Euro and Rs 8 to the Dollar. Two years ago it was Rs 6 to the Euro; I can't remember the Dollar.

And this is what President Michel had to say about it at the recent food summit in Rome...

Happy Liberation Day

A couple of years ago someone welded the liberated man's chains together ...

Here are some views on the matter of Liberation Day:
  • a blog post by Sandra Benoiton Hanks
  • a blog post by Another View of Seychelles Politics. Tagline: "The aim of this blog is to provide an analysis of the Seychelles Politics but an analysis which is not what a political party would like you to believe. I do not claim that I have the absolute truth on everything and I am only giving my opinions or reactions to things that happen. I am not making party propaganda (like other "independent" medias do)"
  • a blog post by Cuhnelbald who writes a political blog on Seychelles, where he looks at some important issues
Will I be dancing on the streets? No, not my cup of tea. I shall be staying at home, avoiding the masses and silently tipping my hat to the person who did the welding. Subversive action with a touch of humour always appeals to me ...

Tequila Boom and My Head is Still Booming

Anyone who says there is no night life in Seychelles hasn't been to the Tequila Boom. The club has been open for a couple of months now and is rapidly becoming THE place to be on a Saturday night. It's supposed to be free for ladies on Saturdays and Wednesdays unless they have a show on. And recently, they have had shows every Saturday ...

Last Saturday was Pous Sa Dife night. The show started after midnight and went on for over an hour. Now, whilst I actually like these guys, an hour of them is too much in one go. Combine the monotony of the music together with too many people smoking and it's no wonder a lot of people were hanging around outside the club where I went to escape.

Still, it was the best show so far. The first one I saw was 4 body building guys prancing around the stage with 4 lifeless girls circling them. The latter were supposed to be sexy, but their pole-dancing was more of an ayo, mon fatige (for non-Seychellois: this is the most used phrase in Seychelles. It means I'm tired, but denotes bone-weary fatigue and fed-upness) than sensual undulating.

The second was supposed to be a Latin Dance show. Another was supposed to be African Dancing. I missed that one, but heard that it consisted of a lot of obscene slithering about on the floor and had very little to do with the Dark Continent, more with island-style fornication.

The Tequila Boom really is the best club on the island now. I just wish they'd scrap the pathetic attempts at live entertainment and let me in for free again...

Coral Strand in Hell or Outer Space?

There used to be a really cool webcam attached to the Coral Strand Hotel showing a good portion of Beau Vallon beach. Now that the renovations have started, I wondered if they left the camera in place. I checked and this is what I found:

(click on the pic for the live link)

Is this hell? Is this outer space? Is this some weird tropical fungus underneath the floorboards?

Any ideas?

Hola Argentina!

Yesterday on the beach, my daughter and I noticed a large number of tall dark and handsome young men cavorting on the beach. That amount of guys only could only mean one thing: Navy. Now, we're used to the Yanks (easily identifiable by their short haircuts, tattoos and noise level) and the Brits (older, heavier, more seasoned looking), but these guys' origins were a mystery.

A mystery soon to be solved, as one young man approached my stall. It turned out they were from Argentina. "Ah, the losers ..." was my first thought, which luckily I refrained from speaking out loud. Luckily, because these young men are so charming and polite, I wouldn't want to hurt their feelings in any way. And the boat they are on is too beautiful for words. It's not your usual Navy ship; no, it's a frigate! And her name is the ARA Libertad. Too romantic!

According to the Nation "One of the world’s tallest, fastest and most beautiful sailing ships, the Argentinian naval frigate Libertad, which arrived in Port Victoria on Saturday on a four-day goodwill visit, was built in 1956 and incorporated into the Argentinian navy in 1963. Her main mast is 52 metres tall, she is 104 metres in length and her 27 sails span 2,700 square metres.

It seems they celebrated their national day here with a military parade on board. I wonder if they did the tango as well ...

Bus Trip Island Style

I don't have a car. This will be obvious to those of you who laughed at my gullibility re petrol prices.

Not being the proud possessor of a spanking new twin cab (anybody who is anybody in Seychelles has one of these), I have to take the bus when venturing further than Beau Vallon. I live in Bel Ombre and it's a mere twenty minutes on foot along the beach to my craft stall, so I prefer to walk than entrust my life to a bus driver who imagines himself to be Ayrton Senna.

Some time ago, Seybrew (the local brewery) brought in breathalyzers which they donated to the Seychelles police. Very public spirited of them, considering they are making huge profits on selling the booze. These breathalyzers were duly used and over 80 percent of the drivers tested showed alcohol levels over the limit. This figure included taxi drivers and (surprise, surprise!) bus drivers. The police reckoned that the machines must be faulty and sent them back to the factory. New breathalyzers were delivered with the same results. I understand they've stopped using them.

Join me on a bus ride in Seychelles for 40 seconds by watching this little gem of a video.

Actually, bus drivers here in the north of Mahé are usually the better drivers. We even have a regular bus schedule and an air-con bus every hour. The air-con buses are the equivalent of first class trains and you pay Rs5 versus the usual Rs3 to ride in luxury. I guess this is because we have more tourists here.

And the best bus driver of all is a woman. She's not only friendly, that chick is one smooth driver...

Rub a Dub Style, Man

It's not everyone's cup of tea, but I rather like these Pous Sa Dife guys. Pous Sa Dife literally means "push the fire" and these guys do have fire in their bellies.

Seychellois dance hall music is very popular in the clubs and at all the fetes like Regatta, etc. Evenings on the promenade, this stuff is blaring out of cars and, even walking along in a residential area on a Saturday night or Sunday afternoon, you'll hear this music blaring out of private homes, whilst the inhabitants are busy getting high on Seybrew and indulging their passion for dancing.

In other words: If you're in the Seychelles, it's unavoidable. So you might as well like it ...

This is a professionally made music video. If there are any music video producers reading this: there is clearly a niche market in the Seychelles for producing decent videos. Please come and save this industry...

And the Beau Vallon Promenade is Ours!

There have been a lot of rumours flying around about it being the last Bazar Labrin at Beau Vallon. This, of course, because the same Russians who bought the Coral Strand, have bought the land along the beach.

According to STB, the government has told the Russians they may not build until the high-water mark on the beach (as they had planned). The Beau Vallon beach promenade belongs to the government and will be left as it is. All activities that are usually held at Beau Vallon, including Bazar Labrin, Regatta and all other activities for the "people" will continue to be held there. The Russians will just have to build further back.

This is great news, not just for us vendors, but also for the Seychellois youth who can go on drinking their Seybrews and blaring hip-hop music from their cars along the promenade. What would we do without our Creole traditions?

The Flip Flop Test

Seeing that I am at the beach practically every day, I practically live in my flip flops. My wonderful Brazilian Havaianas are slowly wearing out though and I can't get them here. Send me a pair?

What Your Flip Flops Say About You

You are super laid back and peaceful. Not much disturbs you.

You're content with what you have in life, and you can't stand feeling worked up.

A lot of good things tend to come your way in life...

You're not too busy or stressed to let an opportunity pass you by.

Your ideal warm weather place: Hawaii

The Flip Flop Test

Actually, Seychelles suits me fine.

Need some time out on Praslin

Like most Seychellois, I hop off to Praslin when I need time out from the oh so hectic rat race on Mahé. It seems unbelievable, I know, that one might need a vacation to an even quieter place, but right now, I could do with a change and Praslin is the cheapest place to go to from here.

Last year, I stayed at the Villa Flamboyant for three nights. I was all on my own during the day and did nothing but read and swim in the ocean. The beach is pretty long there and wonderful for evening walks. That's all you can do there, because it's literally in the middle of nowhere. But oh so peaceful...

I took this picture from my breakfast table.

Isn't it tempting? I wish I had the time to go for a couple of days of seclusion...

The Russians are Coming! Adieu Coral Strand?

Actually, the Russians have been here in full force for some time, but it's only now that their workings have started to affect us. They bought over the Coral Strand some time ago and have been giving locals the evil eye. Now they are closing the hotel for two months for renovations and I fear we may be discouraged from visiting when they reopen.

The Coral Strand has been THE meeting point for Seychellois and expats since it opened 30 years ago. Many a wet hour has been spent downing Seybrews at the pool bar. I've been coming back and forth to the Seychelles for many years and the one constant has been that there is always some bloke with his guitar singing "Mrs. Robinson" every Sunday evening for Happy Hour. Okay, the prices aren't happy, but the mood always is.

Both my kids learnt to swim in the pool and I've spent many afternoons lounging in one of the beach chairs pretending I was on holiday or chatting with other locals. The times of dancing the night away in the Takamaka Room are long gone, but it's still the most fun and sociable place to be on the island.

Where, all of us locals are asking, are we going to spend the next two months? And are we going to be "allowed" back? People are being pessimistic, but I say, we need to claim our rights. The Coral Strand is a Seychellois institution and we won't move!

Do svidaniya!

Craft Stall on the Beach

After grandly proclaiming that most Seychellois blogs discontinue after a few entries due to lack of stamina, I must look as though I've gone the same way with mine. Many apologies. The weather has been glorious and I've been getting lost in island life / aka bumming around on the beach.

I've now found a way to combine my bumming around with work: I've got a stall on the beach selling my crafts. It's great fun as I not only get to sell, but can chat with lot's of people from all over the world. Most of them are staying at the Berjaya Beauvallon Bay Resort, but there are others who spot my stall just walking down the beach. I can recommend the hotel (not getting paid for this!), simply because it's location is brilliant. It has better rooms and infra-structure than the Coral Strand and is livelier than the Fisherman's Cove, which is beautiful but so serene, it is morgue-like. Also, the latter is at the "bad" end of the beach.

So, if you're in the vicinity, pop around and say hi. Looking and chatting is free :-). And fear not, I won't get into any hard sales spiel; I'm pretty useless at that anyway.

The Joys of Cleaning Fish

My boyfriend showed up with a packet of barracuda this morning and left me with the bloody task of gutting them. I think he had heard that Seychellois men bring fish to their womenfolk and, ever keen to impress, took note of my last night's waxing lyrical about the tastiness of bekin. Very sweet of him. Unfortunately, he didn't seem to know of the time-honoured Seychellois tradition that it's guys who clean fish here.

There is a reason for this. Gutting fish is a blood and gore thing. Slicing open a fish belly with a sharp knife and pulling out the bloody blackened guts with your bare hands is best left to the hunters, not the gatherers. Whilst I am a liberated and free woman who can do anything I set my mind to, I don't really want to clean fish. Let the men indulge in their atavistic urges to wallow in the bloody insides of fresh kill. I am perfectly willing to look on in admiration and make the appropriate murmurs of appreciation.

No chance of that today. I'm off to fill my sink with guts and scales ...

Bazar Labrin Cancelled Again

I got a phone call from STB (Seychelles Tourism Board) yesterday advising me that Bazar Labrin is cancelled this week. Yet again. When I asked why, I was told that it was because it was the Easter week. Excuse me? STB takes every little thing as an excuse to cancel the only weekly event at Beauvallon.

Do the tourists give a toss that it's Ash Wednesday? Do the locals? Is it a desecration of Christianity? I don't think so. The STB guys are supposed to show up themselves every Wednesday after their ordinary working hours to "supervise" the bazaar from 4.30 to 8.30. Methinks, cancelling is just another excuse for them not to put in the overtime.

For those not in the know: Bazar Labrin is held every Wednesday on the promenade at Beauvallon and is a meeting point for locals and tourists. There are food and craft vendors (including me) and a couple of guys playing the moutia. It's a fun place to be on a Wednesday evening.

I dare say I won't get a link back from the STB website. Do I give a toss? No. Just come and say hi to me next Wednesday. Unless it's cancelled because it's post-Easter week.

Seychelles Food Sensations

Yesterday, I found a blog that features recipes from the Seychelles: Seychelles Food Sensations. Mouthwatering stuff. Delectable. Tempting to the palate. And all the ingredients needed are available in Seychelles.

Enlightening Books for Enlightened Seychellois

I am currently reading Paolo Coelho's book "The Valkyries", which was passed on to me by a friend of my daughter (oh, enlightened youth!). Like so many books in Seychelles, it looks like it's been read by a hundred different people at least. It smells musty and "lizard-eggy" and is full of comments. At least they are in pencil, so I'm managing to ignore them. Now I'm hoping that the book doesn't fall apart on me; please let it last for some more poor souls who are starving for reading material.

Our one and only book shop on Mahé, Antigone, actually has a small but interesting selection of books. Aside from the coffee-table books on Seychelles, latest crime novels and bestsellers, the buyers at Antigone seem to be committed to raising the spiritual awareness of the Seychellois. There are always new shipments of personal development and spiritual growth books of the non-Catholic variety. These books are usually sold out within days, so I never get to buy them. I'm not really too bothered, as it's all old hat to me; I read them all before they got written. (More fool me for not writing them and making the big bucks!) Whilst I'm not too bothered about missing out on yet another book about the Law of Attraction, I would like to read more of the spiritual novels of the Paolo Coelho variety.

Being a resourceful human being (living in Seychelles has taught me a lot about looking for creative solutions to daily problems), I looked to the internet. And lo and behold! Paolo Coelho himself encourages pirating his books and actually has a site online. On my other blog, I've posted a few links where you can read or download his books in their entirety. Most are quick pdf downloads, so downloading from a slow Seychelles connection shouldn't be a problem.

Meanwhile, where are all the enlightened Seychelles residents who have been reading these books? If you're out there, please get in touch. And please don't tell me you're all sitting in meditation on a beach on La Digue...


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