Bonjour! Ki maniere zot tous?
It's been an unbelievable month being able to see friends and family across the globe and to attend two wonderful weddings.
We flew back to the UK for Susie's sisters wedding, it was a brief three day stop over, but we still managed to meet friends at our favourite boozer in Shepherd's Bush for the standard Brothers Cider, burger then a great match at Queens Park Rangers, followed by yet more Brothers and then a very pleasant stay at Rick and Sandra's Guest House in Gipsy Hill - the bacon muffins in the morning were outstanding!
Next stop was Jenny and Daz's wedding in Buckinghamshire, it was held in a lovely country hotel where the guests had the run of the venue. It was a beautiful wedding, Jenny looked absolutely stunning and everyone had an incredible day. We especially enjoyed the wedding breakfast - roast beef with all the trimmings, we've missed that since being away! Everyone then pulled out some shapes on the dance floor until the early hours. It was great to be able to make it back for their special day and to welcome our new brother in law to the family - congrats Mr and Mrs Conway!
After some sad goodbyes we left the c**p weather of England for the sunshine of Mauritius. We've been staying in a villa by the beach with the Illman family, we've explored the island, learnt some Creole - the local language (v similar to French), have climbed the highest peak, taken a speed boat to visit neighbouring islands, went to the capital city of Port Louis, Rochester Falls and have been made to feel really welcome by all of Neetasha's family - all 70 of them!!
We've been running each day through the sugar cane fields - one of their biggest exports, surrounded by mountains and have sampled some of the great local Creole dishes - pilchards, roti and carrie ourite (octopus curry).
Keith and Neetasha's big day arrived - it was an early start due to the traditions involved - Keith was purified by the Pandit (priest), where pink liquid was painted onto his hands and feet and saffron was place around his body. Susie had hena designs painted all over her hands and Eileen and Susie were dressed in their sarees by Neetasha's family - we'd never have managed it on our own! It was a Hindu/Mauritian ceremony at the family home, the women all looked beautiful in their vibrant and colourful sarees. It was wonderful to experience a wedding from a different culture.
They call Mauritius the Pearl of the Indian Ocean and we agree!
Brad and Susie xxx