This is an old slide from the time I started my earth-trekking experience, back in the early 90's. As you can see I was already carrying a heavy tripod and a spotting scope.
It's the landscape that makes an impression in Niger. There's black volcanic mountains towering over green oases, cascading waterfalls, desert cities with wide tree-lined boulevards, camels, and the dramatic, if lonely, beauty of the desert.
The landscape is almost matched by its inhabitants. It's a country of aristocratic desert nomads, skilled artisans, silversmiths with magical powers, and a race of tall, lithe, people so physically beautiful that even the men enter beauty contests.
Despite its end of the world otherness, Niger is a country perpetually on the brink of ruin. There was a brief moment in the late 1970s, after the discovery of uranium, when the country glowed with economic good health but after the bottom fell out of the market, it reverted to its hand to mouth existence. The desert, for all its beauty, is swallowing large chunks of the country at the rate of knots, there are ongoing and often bloody skirmishes between the government and Tuareg rebels, and the country is still recovering from the devastating Sahel droughts of the early 1970s.
Critiques | Translate
verge (1241) 2005-01-30 7:11
at 1st on the title I really don't like it but it change my perception when I saw the note and the real meaning of the Niger. I love the color, the green has a good contrast on the soil. the sky is a bit dull but i still like the overall composition...rgds
hispic (9619) 2005-01-30 7:33
This is a very suitable photo for TrekEarth.
The dried red-brown river are very impressive.
Excellent colour and composition!
Leonie (8809) 2005-02-15 6:16
Je serai sans doute envoyée en stage au Niger en octobre de cette année par une ONG...et donc ta photo m'intéresse beaucoup...et d'autres aussi si tu en as! ..ainsi que tes belles descriptions!
Léonie (vert demain)