Morumba is a gorgeous bay that is the most prototypically Malagasy place we visited. It’s made up of a couple of tiny fishing settlements, several islands spread out among a lagoon, and plenty of baobab trees and lemurs.
The small islands in the bay are rocky, they look they sprouted of the reef itself, but are still covered in vegetation. They are well populated with birds, including the Malagasy brown parot, a species of parrot where the female is much larger than the male and sexually dominant. Females typically have 4-8 sexual partners. The calls from these parrots and other birds are what woke us up every morning and added to the bays charm.
On our second day there, another small sailboat showed up. They anchored right next to the shore, a mistake we had made the night before and quickly relocated further out after being bombarded by mosquitoes. We gave them a heads up that they should probably do the same, and later that evening they did just that. We had been partaking in some of the local rum for the better part of the day and invited them over to join. They turned out to be two rum-loving Frenchmen and they took us up on their offer. They’d both been living in Mahajanga, the town we were heading to next, for the last 20+ years and we got along with them great. It turns out that one of them had lived in Dallas when he was 19 years old and he was excited to learn that that’s where I’d grown up. He asked me about a bunch of restaurants that I’d never heard of and was pretty sure were no longer in existence. He had particularly fond memories of La Madeleine, a French bistro concept that started in Dallas around the time he was there.
Later in the evening, after everyone had retired except for Jesse and I and the two Frenchmen, we went over to their boat for some dinner. They had caught a beautiful fish on the way in, I’m not sure what kind it was and they only knew the French name, that they cut up for sashimi. It was rich and delicious and reminded me of yellowtail. We also had some bread and cheese and melon for desert, a real meal for kings.
The next morning Conny and I went spearfishing with them. The visibility wasn’t great but one of the French guys got a reef fish that I’d never eaten before but they both said is very good. Later that afternoon we went ashore to check out some lemurs before we left. Marimba Bay is famous for their lemurs and we hadn’t seen any yet, we weren’t going to leave until we had. After walking around the woods looking for about half an hour Jesse spotted a group of them and called the rest of us over. They were read and white and larger than the other lemurs we’d seen thus far. They were really curious when there was just a couple of us, but once our whole group showed up they got a little and took off deeper in to the woods.
With the lemur spotting complete we headed back to the boats, prepared to sail, and headed to Mahajanga, our last stop in Madagascar.