a weekend sojourn to the lompoul desert, on the coast two hours south of saint louis. sandy beach, then sandy desert with a couple passes through the sandy-brown village. coming home with sandy hair, sandy clothes, sandy toes, sandy camera, peaceful mind.
nature is awesome.
i have so many photos of various stretches of sand; i've decided to split this post up into two. first: the beach by lompoul, and a wait in the lompoul village before getting an all-terrain truck through the desert to our campsite.
on the way to lompoul, we stopped at the same famous old baobab we'd climbed en route to touba, which seems like ages ago.
the baobab is one of the emblems of senegal, along with the lion. the senegalese football team is called "les lions de la téranga." the tragic irony is that there are no lions left in senegal. luckily, the baobabs remain.
at least, this one does.
|people frequently visit this sacred site to pray.|
|stealth photos of the sellers.|
our guide, babacar, speaks at least eight languages and always sports the same outrageously loud neon-patchwork tunic-and-pants set with an equally colorful pom-pom hat. he also seems to know quite a bit about traditional medicine, so he explained the usage of each of the plants we encountered. for example, the fruits of this bush provide a milky, fibrous material used as a wound disinfectant.
then on to the beach.
|colorfully painted but rotting fishing boats dot the beach.|
|tables set out for drying freshly caught fish.|
it was refreshing to be a tourist again and really, really exciting to break out my dslr. i've missed taking good photos.
|this had to have been a massive shell.|
|my pants got soaked and sandy pretty much all the way up. i didn't care.|
|my camera got passed around. quite a few selfie gems in there.|
|always nice to have a partner in crime.|
|beach handstands didn't go as well as hoped.|
photoshoot time? duh, this is america's next top model. er, africa's?
|check out the haphazardly-rolled-up gap year pants.|
elliot, can i get my camera back now?
or not. guess i'll just go do a couple cartwheels.
|i'm not the only one who likes being upside down!!|
|writing song lyrics in the sand; watching them get washed away before we've finished all the "da"s.|
lunch was sandwiches under the thatched-roof shelter - but the vegetarian option, for four of the six people in the group, had "just a little bit" of sausage. this was not a cheap excursion, and we don't even get edible food?! bananas and clementines, it is.
|babacar relaxes with his newspaper.|
|this shell looks like a brain. i kept seeing little gray crabs scurry out of the holes like the one in the background, but they'd always be sidestepping back to safety long before i could snap a photo.|
|onions being transported on the beach.|
after a few hours, we headed to lompoul village, where we people-watched while waiting for the vehicle to our tent grounds.
the desert and village are called "lompoul" after "l'homme pul" - pul being an ethnic group in the area.
|the youth center and the mosque for the little tourism-supported village.|
|rural kids get creative in making toys.|
|i suppose we're all waiting for something.|
stay tuned for part two - the actual desert. coming soon to own on video and dvd.