The calls of the owls

« Have you seen the Anjouan scops owl? » Karel inquired, holding out his hand to me, in a way of introducing himself. A National Park ranger turned stay-at-home-dad, he had just arrived on Anjouan with his family as his wife had accepted a position at the NGO Dahari. She was to be the new head of... Continue Reading →

Looking back, looking about

At the end of the year people often look back on their past experiences, trying to sum up what they’ve learned or remembered. I’m prone to such reminiscences so, naturally, to honour the past year I want to write a little bit about insects. I’ve practised being observant about animal behaviour (comes with the job)... Continue Reading →

We went a bit batty

As a child I had always dreamed about one day standing in the back of a 4x4 truck, being driven through the African savannah, spotting all kinds of exotic animals (lions mainly). In this fantasy I invariably wore a colonial-style explorer’s outfit (I was young and stupid) and the landscape was a vast wilderness full... Continue Reading →

Ode to plumbing

After spending a week on vacation on a beautiful island (Moheli) and having a working shower it was time to finally publish this piece on water I wrote a couple of weeks ago

Well, it is not superman

Before you continue reading, I would like to let you know that it is going to be some sort of educational… Gather around, kids! It’s quick lecture time. As an enthusiastic field biologist, ornithologist, and sometimes twitcher, I was really excited to move to a tropical island state in the Indian Ocean. Having been to... Continue Reading →

The five senses of Anjouan

Seeing… Anjouan is a small volcanic island that rises steeply from the Indian Ocean. It is young enough to be considered immature by its older neighbour Mayotte, but probably looks down a bit on the bigger, but much younger, Grande Comore. The mountains, covered in lush, if not native, green vegetation give the island the... Continue Reading →

Slowed down

It has been a long time since our last blog post, but here it is, even though it is only a short one. The internet slows us down immensely, and we can't do anything at usual pace. At work we have download speeds of respectable 5kb/sec (if there even is a signal), so uploading pictures... Continue Reading →

The hardest thing I ever did

About two weeks after we relocated to the Comores, a friend of mine texted me: “And do you have a social life over there?” I paused. I hadn’t even considered this part of emigration as I had packed the Boyfriend, thus buffering me against immediate loneliness. However, what really startled me was that we actually... Continue Reading →

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