Africa

Sahara Desert: A Berber Man And His Camels Provide A Glimpse Of A Bygone Era

Berber man taking his camels home as we leave the Sahara Desert

After yesterday’s post I was inspired to look through more of my images from my 2010 trip to Morocco.

This particular moment took place a half hour of so after yesterday’s image and represents one of the most indelible memories I have of my time there. It was very early in the morning and we were packing up to leave after spending the night in the Sahara Desert.

The sky was a dark purple-grey, but the sun peaked through the clouds for just a moment, illuminating the peach sand – together they were an impressive sight. I thought a storm might be brewing and I tried to imagine rain in the desert. Does it turn into a giant lump of mud? I never did find out.

A young Berber man – late teens tops – gathered the camels he brought for us to ride the night before and began his journey home. Watching him walk his caravan of beasts through such a vivid, color-blocked world, the scene possessed enormous drama; I felt as if I’d gone back in time somehow.

I love moments like this, when your travels gives you a glimpse of another era. From this distance, all the trappings of a modern world were hidden from view, and I imagined that the man and his camels were exactly the way they might have looked centuries ago. I watched him until he slipped from site and all that was left were the dunes.

Five minutes later we were on our way, the Sahara slowly disappearing behind us.

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