Image vs. Reality

November 11, 2009 at 3:15 pm Leave a comment

Our image of the Maldives is of beautiful white sand beaches, endless oceans, upscale resorts and perhaps one of the last paradises on earth. Having made it my duty to try out as many of these island resorts as I can afford and take time off to do, I can say with certainty that the image is definitely true. For a large US pricetag, you too can have a piece of paradise.

What some might not know is that the Maldives is a developing country. It only won its independence from the British in 1965. Until just recently, the government did not allow any opposition and there had been several coup attempts. A new government came in last year. The sewers don’t have capacity, Male the island, is one of the most densely populated per sq. m in the world, the streets just barely have room for two cars side by each, and the scooter and car traffic makes crossing the street or even walking on the streets dangerous at all times.

Point is – the image of the Maldives as an expensive tourist vacation spot – while it is absolutely true – hides a lot of the problems that are endemic in the country. Like a drug/heroin problem, like domestic violence and rampant child sexual abuse.

Of course, these problems are found in many countries but for me, I like having a reality check. There is always a flip side to paradise.

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Two Days Left… Almost at an end…

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