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Africa » Mauritania » Adrar » Choum
July 11th 2008
Published: July 16th 2008
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part of the train load. notice how the wind is blowing and the donkey is about to fall back.
there are no words nor images nor smells to describe the train trip. but Ill try...

so heres the thing, the train comes to nouadibou from somewhere in the middle of the dessert full of minerals, is emptied in the port, and then goes back. this happens two or three times a day (insh alah!), and of course the train is only cleaned before its loaded with minerazls, which means that by the tilme it gets to nouadibou it has a pretty thick layer of toxic silverish .

and so the train leaves from nouadibou port, and sometimes (god onbly knows the algorithm determining when) it stops and lets people get in (get in is some of an undertstatement, as Ill explain later). I was lucky enough to only have to wait 6 hours for the train to stop, some people waited 12 as last two trains didnt stop.

the train stops, lucky us, and then there the avalanche of people. lets say in a train with a songle wagon, and so a capacity of about 30 people in compartments ther are about 100 people getting in. I am not exagerating. two people sit in many chairs, some
empty trainempty trainempty train

this is how the corridor looked like when it was almost empty (no kidding)
sleep in the lugage shelves on the roof, and others like myself just wait standing up for 5 hours until theres enough space in the corridor as to sit in the smallest fetal position. I didnt know I could be packed in such a small volume! after about 8 hours of trip I got to lay on the floor, cover my face with a towel so all the dessert sand wouldnt get in my eyes and sleep. sweet dreams...

the best part was gettingin the train, I run with a mauritanian really fast and thought to be one of the first to get in, but it didnt matter mluch. everybodsy was punching everybody, somebody walked over me, a 300kg senegalese woman was blocken the corridor and a door that people ended up breaking (she wanted to reserve all sits for her family). and the worst is, half of the ing people that get in and punch you are just there to get a spot, for their family and then jump out the window. un ing believable.

Additional photos below
Photos: 5, Displayed: 5


train stops to peetrain stops to pee
train stops to pee

everybody gets off in the middle of the dessert. just some dunes in the far distance. some people actually walk awat towards their home...
train leavestrain leaves
train leaves

hello world

I was expecting a city, but this is choum, my train stop

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