Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Paradise Lost

Last Thursday afternoon, I was bobbing in the warm, warm waters of the Indian Ocean, taking this picture of the tiny (uninhabited) island of St. Pierre (you can see more or less the whole island in this picture), part of the Seychelles group. The trees are heavy with fruit (coconuts, almonds), and the leaf litter is disturbed only by the passing of the occasional skink (this is skink heaven: I've never seen them so fat, sleek and lazy). In the surrounding sea, huge schools of fish swim over white, white sand and gorgeously baroque corals; hawkbill turtles graze peacably just below the surface. There are sharks, too - whitetips (reef, not pelagic), which fled at my approach. I hired a boatman to maroon Mrs. P and myself there for a few hours. Never so happy to be stranded... unfortunately, he turned up again just before sunset, as promised.

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