Wednesday, 24 October 2012

A call to paradise?

Yesterday, I was invited to my cousin's wedding in Mauritius in May. When I say invited, I mean, she messaged me on Facebook to tell me about it. Seriously, I hope that we haven't evolved in this digital age to the point where a message on a social networking site constitutes as a legitimate wedding invitation. My cousin is from my mother's side of the family so, like me, she is of Chinese Thai descent. It's terribly exciting that she has met a person that she wants to share the rest of her life with and even more exciting that he is from a totally different part of the world and of a different cultural background (he is Muslim and of South Asian descent). 

I have never been to Mauritius before and while it is not at the top of my list of dream destinations, I am seriously considering going to this wedding. Obviously, it would be lovely if i could go just to show my support for my cousin. Plus, this island state is a fantastic tourist  destination. It is commonly known as the jewel of the Indian Ocean, with its idyllic, unspoilt beaches, developed economy, cultural diversity and political stability.

However, what draws me to Mauritius above all else is the fact that this was home to the now extinct Raphus cucullatus, more commonly known as the dodo bird. It's strange, I know, but it makes me believe that there is something strange and special to be experienced there...hmmm, it was probably that line of thinking, on the part of 16th century European settlers, that got dodo birds in trouble! It is believed that these almost mythical creatures became extinct once explorers reached the shores of Mauritius, bringing with them cats and dogs, not to mention rats, because they were a flightless bird. Evolution led them to become flightless due to the abundance of food on the island and the lack of predators for a long time. Once predators arrived on the island, they were unable to fly away from danger. The lesson I take from this is that you should never get too comfortable, even if you are living in paradise!

1 comment:

  1. I would love to visit Mauritius, given an odd fascination with small island nations. You should go if you can!