The ball has been set in motion. I am rolling down the proverbial hill and hopefully around the globe to the Maldives in the coming weeks. It seems that despite the heightening tensions, rowing will prevail! Which is good for me in the short-term and will perhaps provide a more interesting political dimension to my work out there which should last the best part of 2 months.
Another overview here goes to show how there is much more to this island nation than just sun, sea and sand. I am not sure quite what to expect when I go out, but I am sure that the day-to-day lifestyle expected in such a so-called idyll is not going to match up with the reality. From people I’ve met who have been there before doing the same thing I will be doing, boredom is something which pervades island culture as a nation which depends upon providing a good time to other people struggles to occupy its own people. Is that a political problem, or one which is inevitable? I don’t know, and that is one of the things which I hope to find out when I do go.
The second “related article” in this blog seems to me to be as firsthand as anything can be in terms of summarising the issues this country faces. The tension seems to lie between fighting for a democracy, but not fighting so hard that you put off tourists; the influence of social media is also a frightening one as the ability to broadcast inaccurately from such a remote location means that some false information is inevitably going to be relayed, and as the blog post suggests, with international ramifications for the Maldivian tourism industry.
- Maldives protests prompt travel warning (telegraph.co.uk)