Madagascan Hissing Cockroaches

Travelling down the spine of Madagascar from Antananarivo to Taolagnaro by Toby Deveson. March 1990When you are on a 64 hour journey down the spine of Madagascar on the back of a converted lorry, many things happen. You get bored, so you study in great detail all the nuts and bolts and folds and creases around you. Everything you do becomes the focus of the other passenger’s attention, partly because you are the only white people on the bus and partly because you are now part of a small and cramped community. And you start to notice any small changes or additions to your surroundings. Such as the appearance of a giant, huge, massive cockroach just above your head, balanced precariously on the canvass awning.

I had no idea at the time what it was or what it was capable of doing. Unfortunately. So, making a show of being relaxed, confident and unbothered I stood up and went to grab hold of it in order to throw it off the back of the lorry. It seemed to be, after all, nothing more than a giant beetle type insect. As my fingers went to take hold of it hissed. A loud, scary and completely unexpected hiss. The truck was noisy as we bumped over the desert track, but I heard it, clear as a bell and i leapt back in absolute terror, landing clumsily on my hard seat to the sounds of raucous laughter, cheering and clapping.

The Madagascan Hissing Cockroach. Be warned.

Related Images

Travelling down the spine of Madagascar from Antananarivo to Taolagnaro by Toby Deveson. March 1990

Travelling down the spine of Madagascar from Antananarivo to Taolagnaro by Toby Deveson. March 1990

Travelling down the spine of Madagascar from Antananarivo to Taolagnaro by Toby Deveson. March 1990

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