Day 147, Year 5: A Lucky Ride
Date: Monday, March 22, 2010
Weather: Beautiful, Sunny, HOT Day with Scattered Clouds
Location: Gan Island, Addu Atoll, Maldives

What a wonderful world! This morning Ed and Lynne of Constance and Mark and I went to shore at 10 am to walk to the next island of Feydoo. No, we cannot walk on water. There is a causeway connecting the islands, so off we went. We got halfway across the causeway when a white van with an aeronautics logo on the side stopped. The driver was Lal from Sri Lanka who is here working here at the airport. He told us to jump in and he would take us where we needed to go. We needed to go to the ATM on the third island of Maradhoo and then back to Feydoo, the second island, to check out the grocery stores and buy a SIM card for the modem that we hope to use to connect us to the internet. Ed was looking for capacitors for his ailing generator. Lal looked at the blown capacitor that Ed brought with him and then the search began. He knew of one place, but he stopped guys on motorbikes along the way showing them the blown capacitor and asking where one could be bought. We went to one store after another and actually found almost matching capacitors. We would never have been able to do this without the help of Lal, so getting a ride from him was lucky indeed. Ed had thought he was going to have to order from Germany, but maybe not. Ed bought one capacitor here and one capacitor there and by noon when everything closes for two hours, we were back on Gan Island with three new capacitors. We said our thanks and farewells to Lal and headed back to our boats to have lunch and get ready for another trip ashore in the afternoon.

At 2 pm we walked across the causeway and up the road along the water on Feydoo. I had called our agent, Mas-ood Saeed, and he had given me directions to a place where we could buy the right kind of SIM card for our computer modem and directions to his office which just happened to be right above the SIM card store. Mark spent way over an hour in the Waytania shop trying to get a SIM card to work in our modem while Ed, Lynne and I went upstairs to gather information from Mas-ood. We found out that fuel here is going to cost almost as much as in India due to a recent increase, but at least we can get fuel and propane cooking gas. So much for traveling 700 miles to get cheaper fuel. It doesn’t exist. Mark had not had good luck in the Waytania shop as the young man could not get our modem working on his computer, but he bought a SIM card for the modem anyway so he could try it on our computer. We made arrangements for the refrigeration guy to come tomorrow and to have the propane tanks picked up to be filled. We will get fuel the next day. We left Masood’s office and walked to the Two Plus One grocery store. It was small but well stocked and I was able to buy canned whole tomatoes, canned mangoes, and order some fresh veggies to be brought to Gan from Male. Male is the center of government in the Maldives and the place to which everything is shipped from the outside world. From there, things are then sent out to the various islands. The owner of Two Plus One just happens to be in Male right now and will bring the veggies back with him. Lucky for us. On the way back to Gan, we stopped at a new store called 3. We wondered if that is a play on Two Plus One, but whatever, we found this store to cater to the tastes of ‘outsiders’. They have lots of things, and even though the prices seem a bit high, we bought a few things there as well.

Mark has spent his whole evening trying to get wifi going one way or another, but so far nothing is working. We have multiple options, so we will report on what works and what doesn’t in tomorrow’s log.

100322 Day 147 Maldives–Tour of Feydoo