“ça va mesdames? Cadeaux?”
“ça va bien. No, pas cadeaux. ça va?” Then the little girl with her dark hair braided under her bright pink scarf gave me a cadeau. A small packet of biscuits. I really like Atar, despite all kids asking for gifts. It’s a calm and quiet city, and if you avoid the roundabout there’s not much bustle at all. In the small Senegalese restaurants you can eat maffe without meat for 300 ouguiya, about 70 euro cents. With the meal you get a bucket with fresh water and there are three restaurants to choose from. Two where you sit on the floor and one with two tables and benches.
Yesterday I came back from Ouadane. A small ancient city in the north east of the country, at the end of the road. If you want to go further you need a four by four and a good gps.
I went with Ian whom I met at Bab Sahara the day before, we shared a taxi and stayed with Zeida in her auberge. She invited us for lunch with her family and we talked a lot about the downfall of tourism in the region, and how it affect the people. It’s pretty severe, and many people lost their income when France in 2007 made the Adrar in Mauritania a red zone. The area around Ouadane is supposed to be very dangerous now and many people advised me not to go. I went anyway, of course. I never trust the words of people who hasn’t been there themselves. It was supposed to be dangerous last year as well, and it really wasn’t.