Men and women use different frames of reference when they give directions. This difference is also cultural. On a recent trip to Mafia Island, off the coast of Tanzania, I had to take a shortcut, off the beaten path, down through some scrub land. No roads, no buildings, just bushes, trees, a few cows. And sand. Lots of sand.

I was going to take this route a few times, and so just to make sure I didn't get lost Marameta decided to quickly show me the way.

As we walked he gave me some quick references which I could ostensibly use when making the journey alone. But the references were all using natural way points, which whilst very familiar to locals were totally new to me...

First step was aim for the hut. That was the easy part.

Next up, turn left at the tamarind tree. No north and south here. Directions by natural landmark. Never mind the fact I'd never seen a tamarind before...

Then walk for a bit...

Past the sour apple tree... yes, they are sour. Very appley though.

Then aim for the purple tree. Still not quite sure why it's called the purple tree, despite extensive explanations and cross questioning.

Then the tricky bit as we cross over a barren patch and aim for the tree whose name I forgot as soon as he said it, for the path which you can't see util your walking on it.

And then the easy bit. Just keep walking along the sandy track. A very long, hot, but beautiful sandy track.

Past the seaweed they pick to use on salads...

Until you get to where your going.

Those were the directions I used to get from here to there. Therein lies the cultural difference in directions. Go by what you see around you. Look up and see.