Maldives 20050123

Woke up early this morning and saw the sunrise from our bedroom. Another spectacular sight. Fell back asleep and enjoyed our late breakfast. Learned from our informal meeting with Fikry, our guest manager, that they are aware of our late departure from Male this Saturday, and will ensure that we are not on a morning flight from Kuredu. I also asked about whether there was any organisation of Kuredu accepting relief items for Maldivian tsunami victims, and he explained yes, and that we could leave our items with him.

We went into the water, right in front of our villa. Enjoyed the swim. Came inside to prepare to sunbathe, when it soon began to pour rain. Change of plan was to read books from our deck porch. After the rain stopped, we still manage to sit in the sun for about an hour.

After lunch, we went for a walk about the whole island. We thought that it would be somewhat overcast, but as luck would have it, it was clear skies and sunny. We stopped back into our villa for more sun cream, and headed back out. Unwisely, we didn’t wear shoes, thinking there would be plenty of soft sand. By the time we realised our bad decision, we were too far to do much about it.

Spent the afternoon walking about. Discovered the beach bungalows, which are basic. Their rooftops aren’t even covered in thatch: just exposed corrugated metal. And their beach isn’t swept: exposed litter isn’t appealing. I suspect that many of the occupants are the types who treat Kuredu as a cheap all-you-can-drink holiday, and they’re not at their bungalows much anyway. The beach villas, starting from the southeast side of the island, are better appointed, and near the lagoon where the best snorkelling is.

We discovered the golf course, the only one in all of the Maldives. Stopped in for a soft drink. Found the badminton course, and Madame Oui inquired at the sports bar about reserving it. Went to the ProDivers shop, and reserved a snorkelling tour for tomorrow morning. I bought a cool ProDivers t-shirt as a souvenir, across the street.

We got to dinner early tonight, and were able to choose what I reckon is the best table of the restaurant: a table for two at the most southerly point, where you look out at the ocean. With the full moon overhead, candlelight, and sound of the waves crashing on the nearby shore, it was very romantic.

Inside the restaurant were impressive large cuisine carvings: fish, mermaids, eagle and snake. I got photos of them all. I ate turkey with cranberry sauce, while Madame Oui had some suckling pig. I tried the house red wine tonight, and was again pleasantly surprised how decent it was. Madame Oui reckoned it was a Shiraz, which is fine with me.

Madame Oui wasn’t feeling too well. Complained of a headache, probably due to too much exposure to the sun and heat today. I offered to come straight home afterwards, but she was a good sport and we went to the Sangu bar for a nightcap. She had a pineapple juice and I had a vodka with cranberry juice. The cranberry juice is not included as part of the all-inclusive package, so I had to pay for it. I was surprised that it cost $3.50 for this simple mixer. All the same, it was a refreshing drink.

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