Google Maps mystery man carves “indecipherable riddle” – can you solve it?


A “conundrum” spotted on Google Maps confuses people on social media as they try to figure out what it means.

The Google Maps image of a man writing in the sand in Cape Verde was posted on a popular Reddit thread.


The strange text was spotted on Tarrafal beach in Cape Verde in a Google Street View image from 2019Credit: Google Maps
Some think it's a poem


Some think it’s a poemCredit: Google Maps

The Reddit page is described as: “A subtitle for anything and everything to do with Google Maps, Google Earth and Google Street View.”

User you / onelyjo recently posted the riddle image on the wire and wrote: “I went to Cape Verde and saw this man writing in the sand, anyone know what that says ?.”

The image appears to have been taken on Tarrafal beach in Cape Verde, Africa.

A Reddit user responded to the image and guessed that the text was written in Portuguese.

Another said: “This is not Portuguese, it is Cape Verdean Creole, it is based on Portuguese but they are not mutually intelligible.”

However, another user pointed the way to a Reddit thread from last year that discusses the “conundrum” in more detail.

The old Reddit article shows a larger version of the image.

It was posted by the user u / mbsob who said: “I was playing on Google Earth and I found this photo on a beach in Cape Verde. What is he writing?”

More Reddit users had responded to this thread with potential explanations.

One said: “A little background. Bana was a very popular Cape Verdean singer. The writings don’t make a lot of sense, and it seems to me that the person there has mental health issues. So that said, line by line:

“Bana I miss you
Come read! Only
Ball! Who?
Did you sing? Alone!
Bongo (?)? Not only!
Bana and the seas
Banana ! Just come back (?)
Banana ! To tear…”

However, other people disagreed with this translation, so the mystery remains.

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