Blogs from Nouakchott, Trarza, Mauritania, Africa - page 2


Africa » Mauritania » Trarza » Nouakchott May 29th 2007

Dakhla-NouakchottTom Griffithurl='/Videos/3399.html' onclick='dialog("/Videos/3399.html?popped=1","tbvideo",600,600);return false;'The Sahara You know you have arrived in West Africa when your old van breaks down in the desert wilderness of No Man's Land, and then again five minutes past the customs check, requiring you and five hastily-gathered Mauritanians to get behind and give it a push. Yes, we made it to Mauritania, and it instantly felt so much more African than Morocco. From the ricketty wooden hut that constituted Mauritanian Immigration at the border, to the old Mercedes taxi blaring out Senegalese pop music, the vibe transformed after crossing the arid border zone. Despite being the last remaining haven of the Moors, and the distinctly Arabophile attitudes of the government, the spirit of West Afr... read more
Dakar - 1430km to go...
Chinguetti youths
Le Maure bleu

Africa » Mauritania » Trarza » Nouakchott May 16th 2007

Die Sekretaerin als Repraesentant des Spiessbuergertums. Beim Anblick der heissen Blondine sprach sie: "Na Betti, was geht!?"... read more
heisse Blondine (im Hintergrund: Arenal)

Africa » Mauritania » Trarza » Nouakchott April 10th 2007

Since I left you in Morocco, I've travelled south from Marrakech and on to Mauritania via the disputed territory of Western Sahara. Western Sahara, as I found out, was invaded by Morocco in 1975, resulting in a 16 year long guerilla war against the occupation. There's been a cease-fire for ages now, but for the last 15 years the locals have been waiting to vote in a referendum to decide on independence or integration. The Moroccan government spend upwards of US$2 million a day in the region, and it's not difficult to spot what this money is spent on, with police checkpoints every few miles in what is essentially the middle of nowhere! And all for the usual reason ... natural resources - zzzzzzz.... Anyway, the years of guerrilla warfare mean that the country is ... read more
Mine field
Giant sandpit

Africa » Mauritania » Trarza » Nouakchott March 31st 2007

There are numerous terms, of varying political correctness, to describe the stage of development of African countries. To give you an idea of where Mauritania is at, the election campaign pledge of the recently appointed president was “to stamp out slavery for good!” The slave trade was only outlawed here in 1980 but apparently it continues. Mauritania is a fascinating country to travel through, the population being some of the hardiest people on earth. After driving for hours through empty and unbroken sand seas you often come across small villages, desperately trying to stay afloat above the shifting sands. The villages consist of tents made from many individual patches of cloth looking like overgrown tortoises. It is amazing that the rag tag structures survive the unremitting sand-laden fiercely hot wind. And what these people find ... read more
Fishing Boats at Port de Peche
Bustling Port de Peche
Port de Peche

Africa » Mauritania » Trarza » Nouakchott February 10th 2007

Met z'n vieren achterin een oude Mercedes gepropt, beginnen we aan de acht uur duurende rit richting Nouakchott, de hoofdstad van Mauritanië. Op de gebruikelijke gebed- en theestops na schieten we lekker op, de chauffeur rijdt lekker door rond 22:00u staan we bij een politiepost aan de stadsgrens van Nouakchott, wat er op dat moment precies aan de hand is kan ik niet helemaal volgen, maar wat ik later hoor, is de diesel van de Mercedes op, we moeten maar uitstappen en zien hoe we verder komen, de agent vraagt de eigenaar van de splinternieuwe Mercedes GL, die achter ons stopt, de dame die ook met ons meerijdt thuis te brengen en die toeristen kan ie wel laten staan, na wat aandringen van de eigenaar van de auto, mag hij ons ook meenemen, het blijkt een ... read more
De vissersboten
De boeg

Africa » Mauritania » Trarza » Nouakchott January 13th 2007

Whoa it’s been a little while since we’ve written. We’ve been here a week, it seems like so much longer. Here’s a run-down of the past week: SATURDAY: We slept from 5pm Friday until 9am on Saturday. We got up, cooked breakfast with Rafo, and headed off to see the Plaza De Armas. We visited the Cathedral, and we saw the painting of the “Last Supper” with the Guinea Pigs. We then saw the Plaza San Blas (very beautiful, you can see our pictures), the district where artists show their work. We then went and sat in the middle of the local market, Wanchaq. After lunch we went to the Museo Inka, which contains relics from pre-Inca, Inca, and colonial times. It also contained the largest collection of queros, Inca drinking vessels, 450! SUNDAY: On Sunday ... read more
Avenue Near House.
Coricancha II.

Africa » Mauritania » Trarza » Nouakchott December 7th 2006

Apparently the average person in the UK uses 200 litres of water a day, for drinking, cooking, cleaning, toilets etc. For the past week we have been surviving on 6 to 8 litres a day...the result is not a pleasant sight or smell! Well we have made it through the big sand pit as far as the capital of Mauritania, mostly in one piece. The truck is suffering slightly with a leaking fuel tank, not what you want to find out half way across the sahara! What can I say about the Sahara? It is BIG! There is a lot of SAND! It is hot and windy. Sand can cover every inch of your body in about 20 seconds out here. Flies will home in on your head in 10 seconds out here. There are rarely ... read more
Attack of the giant camels!
The perfect sundowner
Paradise is a deserted beach in the desert

Africa » Mauritania » Trarza » Nouakchott May 30th 2006

I made the same trip I had intended before but without any catastrophic car accidents, happily. So I am seeing a lot of familiar faces and back in Nouakchott spending some quality time. But I am starting to become very sick of French. It makes two months now that I've been speaking very little english and while I am getting quite good at French I want to study a different language now. Ahh the ride through the desert was long but pleasant, lots of good conversation. It's a bit hot but not too. On the bus in Morocco I sat next to a girl on the route to Agadir. I had made a lot of copies of CDs in France and I was listening to them, and she noticed that I didn't have a CD ... read more

Africa » Mauritania » Trarza » Nouakchott February 12th 2006

I don't like to quote the lonely planet, but this very much is the landscape of MADMAX. Car wrecks, flocks of camels and nomads dressed in layers of light, pale-indigo coloured cloth blowing in the wind; with six metre long pieces of cloth wrapped around their heads covering all but the sand blistered eyes. Crossing the border into Mauritania is a glimpse of African bureocracy to come. The actual crossing took us about four hours. We had to stop and show our passports at six places to answer irrelevant questions and to wait for the police/gendarme/military/visa-issuer and so on, to decide for how long time to hold us. Realizing that it would have paid of to attend french-class instead of German back in high-school. In Nouadhibou we found our self a dormitory to share with some ... read more

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