Monday, July 30, 2012

And they are at the gate!

The races were fun!  I ended up even for the day, having picked a few winners and a few losers. Barry was ahead for the day until the last race when he put his money on what he thought was the correct horse but he made a mistake.  The horse he thought he had bet on won but when he went to collect his winnings he realized he had made a mistake. The racetrack is celebrating it 200th anniversary so it felt like we were following in the steps of centuries of Mauritians when we were placing our bets.  The turf looked like it was in great shape, and we had great fun joining in all the hooting and hollering at the finish line!
We have been busy since then, we took the boat about 15 km north to a spot called Riviere Noire, where we had great access to the National Park.
The boat is anchored in the bay furthest from the camera.

We climbed the tallest mountain in Mauritius at 823m. While going up this peak we had to use chains and ropes to help us up and down some of the steepest parts.  On the windward side of the mountain it was very mucky and our shoes became covered in slimy mud. I felt at times as if I was hauling around twice the weight of my ordinary shoes.  The footing was a bit treacherous in the greasy conditions and Barry and I were glad we had sturdy walking sticks.  On another day we hiked down the front of different peak for a great day's outing. Once we got to the bottom of the mountain, it was another 6 and 1/2 km to get back to the boat.  There never seemed to be much traffic on the road and we able to catch a ride.  It was a very boring, long bit of  walking at the end of a enjoyable mountain hike. 

We were on the boat and one of our fellow cruisers spotted a very weird looking roof on shore.  There is an endangered species of bird on the island called a pink pigeon.  He was sure he looking at a roof that shaped like pigeon.  One day we went out walking to clear up the mystery of the unusual roof.  We tried to get in a gated community, but the guard that was there to keep out the riff raff took look and denied us entry.  We walked along and down the road we saw a tour bus, sure enough it was stopped before the building that had the bird roof.  It turned out to be a dove and it was on a church, just when you thought you had seen everything!!!!