|Did the camel trip into the desert yesterday, and it was absolutely brilliant, one of the best things I have ever done. Left Atar in the morning to arrive at the tiny old caravan town of Chinguetti at around eleven ( taxi took 2 hours). The camel ride began at one o'clock, and I did it with a young Japanese chap. Along with our guide, we were the only tourists, as no-one is coming to Mauritannia anymore since the French declared it a dangerous country to vist...not true at all! The peace and quiet out amongst the huge sand dunes was incredible. We also broke the journey up by having some tea and lunch at an oasis. It is incredible being in an old desert town with barely any amenities to speak about, and for the second night in a row I slept nomad style in a tent with a mattress on the floor. You really feel like you are totally alone in the desert , and the 21st century seems a very long way away. The taxi picks up many people , not just you, and there were 4 in the back, together with myself and Seto ( the Japanese) in the front. He was actually sitting over the gearstick, and changing gear became a bit of a task for the driver.
We arranged to leave Chinguetti at 5 this morning, but, as usual, the driver didn't turn up till 6. In Islamic countries, trying to arrange a time is bloody irritating, as they all say , "yes...inshallah", which means god -willing. So, if they are not there on time, then it's god's fault, not theirs! Anyway, We managed to get back to Atar by 8 o'clock to catch the bus down to the capital, Nouackchott ( 6 hours) I have to say that Nouakchott is a bit of a shithole, and it's almost as if the desert is trying to swallow it up given the the amount of sand around. It does have a few good restaurants however. I have loads more pictures that I am presently uploading, but , yet again, the internet is incredibly slow, so I might only manage to get 10 or so uploaded just now.
Leaving Mauritania tomorrow, and off to Senegal. I will visit the town of Saint Louis for the day before heading to the capital, Dakar, on Monday where I have arranged to couchsurf with someone.
Will now cut this update short again, as the connection will most probably vanish soon.