My stay in Addu has come to an end. Sadly is the adverb you would probably use but I’m not going to use it because I should be returning in a month! That’s right, JamesGoes back to Maldives for more installments of “Big Night Out”, “Maldivian Product Reviews” and other such gems. But seriously, I have been really moved by the response I have got from the community during these eight weeks. I have never encountered any hostility or criticism and I have been treated even better than I could have imagined.
Now all that’s out the way, here’s my usually cynical take on what happened this evening.
I had some inkling that I would be thrown a party (people eating food and sitting down = party) and I played along as well as I think I could have done. I asked if I should come to someone’s house for dinner and they said yes. Roba, however, told me that he would pick me up at 8 for a “coffee”. I rejected his offer to wind him up as I knew what was going on, but nevertheless he picked me up at 8 and gave me a ride around the island under the pretence that we had to do some “shopping”. We went to three shops to buy one stick of women’s deodorant, as he “couldn’t find the right one”. We then stopped again to buy a bar of chocolate because, “Jems, I need choclit at hoam”. Ok, then…
We then did another big loop around the island and came back to my house. Roba said “Jems, I need the toilet.” And I said ok and let him into my house. At this point I didn’t play along as much as I should have done as I cheekily asked him to go while I waited outside. He told me I should come in and then I went in and did my best job of looking surprised. I didn’t have to do much acting, because instead of shouting a civilized “surprise!!!” as I imagine happens in England (I have never had a surprise party thrown for me), everyone just screamed really loudly. So either way I looked shocked and then the party began. There was a lot of food and I am going to miss the chapatti and curry, but it will be back in my diet soon enough.
Next stop. JamesGoes to Male.