SEJŠELI – SEYCHELLES

Devojcice u pesku-Girls playing in the sand

Devojcice u pesku-Girls playing in the sand

Emanuelina kuca-Union Estate Park

Emanuelina kuca-Union Estate Park

Igra s morskom kornjacom u tirkiznoj vodi-Playing with a sea turtle in turquoise water

Igra s morskom kornjacom u tirkiznoj vodi-Playing with a sea turtle in turquoise water

Mala dzamija u glavnom gradu Viktoriji-A small mosque in the capital Victoria

Mala dzamija u glavnom gradu Viktoriji-A small mosque in the capital Victoria

Mali Big Ben u centru glavnog grada Viktorije-A small Big Ben in the capital Victoria

Mali Big Ben u centru glavnog grada Viktorije-A small Big Ben in the capital Victoria

Najpoznatija plaza na Sejelima- Anse Source d'Argent-the most famous beach

Najpoznatija plaza na Sejelima- Anse Source d’Argent-the most famous beach

Najpoznatija plaza na Sejselima - Anse Source d'Argent-the most famous beach

Najpoznatija plaza na Sejselima – Anse Source d’Argent-the most famous beach

Najpoznatija plaza na Sejselima-Anse Source d'Argent-the most famous beach

Najpoznatija plaza na Sejselima-Anse Source d’Argent-the most famous beach

Pogled na plazu Bo Valon-A view of Beau Vallon beach

Pogled na plazu Bo Valon-A view of Beau Vallon beach

Riblja pijaca u gradu-The fish market in the town

Riblja pijaca u gradu-The fish market in the town

Stare dzinovske kornjace-Old giant turtles

Stare dzinovske kornjace-Old giant turtles

Unutrasnjost ostrva-Island countryside

Unutrasnjost ostrva-Island countryside

Vocna simfonija-A fruit symphony

Vocna simfonija-A fruit symphony

Volujska zaprega kao prevozno sredstvo na La Digu-An oxcart in La Digue

Volujska zaprega kao prevozno sredstvo na La Digu-An oxcart in La Digue

Aranzman za vencanje na plazi Bo Valon-The wedding setting on the Beau Vallon beach

Aranzman za vencanje na plazi Bo Valon-The wedding setting on the Beau Vallon beach

Buket u cajniku-A bouquet in a teapot

Buket u cajniku-A bouquet in a teapot

Coco de Mer - zenski i muski plod-A female and a male nut

Coco de Mer – zenski i muski plod-A female and a male nut

Crkva na ostrvu La Dig-A church on La Digue Island

Crkva na ostrvu La Dig-A church on La Digue Island

Crkva na ostrvu Mahe-A church on Mahe Island

Crkva na ostrvu Mahe-A church on Mahe Island

Crkva u brdima-A church in the hills

Crkva u brdima-A church in the hills

Ovaj čudesni arhipelag u Indijskom okeanu prvi put sam video u kultnom filmu
Emanuela sedamdesetih godina prošlog veka. Nisam mogao poverovati da ću
mnogo godina kasnije posetiti veliku drvenu kreolsku kuću na ostrvu La Dig,
u kojoj je snimljen film. Tada  je već odavno bila napuštena i u lošem
stanju, ali su mi meštani s ponosom rekli da je u njoj, nekoliko godina
ranije, odseo britanski premijer Toni Bler.  Priznajem da je i dalje odisala
onom senzualnošću iz filma, koja se ne zaboravlja.
I moj kum, doktor Miša Todorović, koji me je venčao na sejšelskoj plaži,
dobro se seća i filma i te posete, kao i mnogih poseta poznatih svetskih
ličnosti koje su ovde dolazile, uglavnom nezvanično. Privatnim jahtama i
tajnim čarter letovima dolazio je politički i umetnički džet set iz celog
sveta, a Miša je često bio u njihovom društvu sa svojim velikim prijateljem
i legendarnim prvim predsednikom Republike Sejšeli, ser Džejmsom Mankamom.
Sedimo u relativno skromnoj predsednikovoj kući, koja je takođe drvena i u
kreolskom stilu, i uživamo u njegovim pričama o susretima sa znamenitim
ljudima ovog sveta i sticanju nezavisnosti zemlje polovinom sedamdesetih
godina XX veka. Miša ovde živi više od dvadeset godina i imao je skoro sve
zdravstvene funkcije: od hirurga i direktora svih sejšelskih bolnica, do
osnivača Univerziteta Sejšela i zamenika ministra zdravlja. Njegov prijatelj
Džimi, kako tepa predsdniku, na tome mu je zahvalan i sada su zajedno u
nekim višim sferama, svetskim pokretima za mir i razvoj, stalno na putu, ali
i u ovoj kući s pogledom na pučinu i među raskošnom tropskom vegetacijom.
Volujska zaprega sa islikanim kolima skoro da je jedini prevoz na La Digu,
malom i najlepšem ostrvu arhipelaga. Prolaskom kraj lokalne crkve i
Emanueline kuće, stiže se do ogromnih stoletnih kornjača koje deca vole da
jašu, a zatim i do plaža koje su veoma posebne, poznate iz filmskih
ljubavnih scena. Ogromne oble vulkanske stene, sa izvijenim kokosovim
palmama između njih, čine pravi praistorijski pejzaž, koji se spušta do
belih peščanih plaža i plitke tirkizne vode u koju uranjaju stene, što čini
ovo mesto posebnim i nezaboravnim.
Najveće ostrvo Pralen jedinstveni je lokalitet posebne vrste morskog kokosa,
Coco de Mer, koji samo ovde postoji i liči na ženski torzo. To je ženski
plod, dok muški ima izrazito muško obličje, u vidu ogromne banane.
Glavno ostrvo Mahe ima sva obeležja koja bi trebalo da čine državu, ali isto
tako lepe plaže i veoma luksuzne hotele. Neki od njih su nezamislivo skupi,
a oni na manjim okolnim privatnim ostrvima još skuplji. Zanimljivo je da se
mnoga od tih ostrva mogu kupiti, samo za vaš lični raj. Džimi će rado
posredovati u toj trgovini, a nema baš svako tu privilegiju.
Kreolska kuhinja je samo jedan u nizu rajskih doživljaja u ovom ambijentu, a
posebno velike krabe u sosu od đumbira. Kao počasni konzul Srbije na
Sejšelima, Miša i njegova supruga Nataša znaju sve najbolje restorane na
ostrvu, pa čak i one skrivene u brdima, među tropskom vegetacijom i s
pogledom na glavni grad, koji se naziva Viktorija. U gradu je centralni trg
s minijaturnom kopijom londonskog Big Bena, kreolska pijaca sa raznobojnim
ribama, začinima i cvećem, kao i male kolonijalne zgrade i crkve. I sve je
tako malo i ljupko da budi želju da sve to ponesete sa sobom.
Naravno u srcu, jer Sejšeli su mesto koje ulazi pravo u srce i tu zauvek
ostaje.

Decembar 2007.
_________________________________________________________

I heard about this wonderful archipelago in the Indian Ocean for the first
time in the cult film Emmanuelle in the 1970s. I did not believe that many
years later, on La Digue island, I would visit the big wooden Creole house
in which this film was made. It was already abandoned and in a bad condition
at the time, but the locals proudly pointed out that a few years previously
Tony Blair, the British Prime Minister, had stayed there. I have to admit
that the house still emanated the unforgettable sensuality that was apparent
in the film.
My friend, Dr Miša Todorović, who was best man at my wedding on a Seychelles
beach, remembers well both the film and that particular visit, as well as
many other visits of famous people who usually tavelled incognito. The
world’s political and artistic jet set arrived on private yachts and secret
charter flights, and Miša would often accompany them together with his great
friend, the legendary first President of the Republic of Seychelles, Sir
James Mancham.
We are sitting in the relatively modest  President’s house which is also
made of wood in the Creole style, enjoying his stories about meeting various
famous people from all over the world as well as the country gaining its
independence in the mid-1970s. Miša has been living here for more than 20
years and has held almost all functions in this country’s healthcare system:
from a surgeon and director of all Seychellois hospitals, to the founder of
the University of Seychelles and deputy of the Minister of Health. His
friend Jimmy (his term of endearment for the President) is grateful to him
for all that work; now they work together in a higher sphere of world peace
and development movement, travelling all the time and spending rare free
moments in this house amid lush vegetation with views of the open sea.
Ox carriages, decorated with paintings, are almost the exclusive mode of
transport at La Digue, the small and most beautiful island of the
archipelago. Passing by the local church and Emmanuelle’s house, you reach a
group of several centuries old tortoises that children like to climb on, and
then the beaches which are truly special and well known from the film’s love
scenes. Huge rounded volcanic cliffs with coconut palms slanting between
them make up for a genuine pre-historic landscape; it further descends  to
the white sandy beaches and  their shallow turquoise water which embraces
the plunging steep cliffs, making this scenery unique and unforgettable.
The largest island Praslin is a uniqe location as it is home to a special
species – Coco de Mer – a type of sea coconut which grows only here and
looks like a female torso. That is a female fruit, while the male fruit has
visibly masculine features and is shaped like a huge banana.
The main island of Mahe has all the state institutions, but also beautiful
beaches and very luxurious hotels. Some of them are unthinkably expensive
and those on surrounding pirvate islands are even more expensive. It is
interesting that many of those islands can be bought, for your own private
paradise. Jimmy would gladly mediate in that trade, but not everyone has the
privilege to make use of it.
Creole cuisine is only one of the many heavenly experiences in this
ambiance, especially giant crabs in ginger sauce. As a Serbian honorary
consul in the Seychelles, Miša and his wife Nataša know all the best
restaurants on the island, even those hidden in the hills amid tropical
vegetation and with views of the capital city, Victoria. The city boasts a
central square with a miniature copy of Big Ben, a Creole market with
multi-coloured fish, flowers and spices, and small colonial buildings and
churches. And everything is so small and quaint that you feel like taking it
all home with you.
Of course, only in the heart, as the heart is the place where the Seychelles
reaches straight away and stays there forever.

December 2007

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