SAHARAN PROVINCES

Carnet de voyage de Goulimine, Smara, Dahkla, Maroc. Jacques Bravo

History reminds us that of these seemingly barren expanses  long invincible forces emerged, those of the "veiled", the  people of the Ribat the Almoravids who created an empire that went from  Smara, witness city, to Toledo encompassing all of North Africa.  And that they will be replaced by mountaineers from the confines of  the Atlas, close to this same desert: the Almohades of which Tinmel remains,  the Koutoubia, the Hassan tower and the Andalusian Giralda unfortunately  poorly groomed. The grains of sand have long excited, if not nourished,  the daydreams of Europeans always on the lookout for cities  lost, here as in the Amazon! The purest of these conquerors of the  poetry, Michel Vieuchange, left his life and his dream there. Camille Douls  passes very quickly and continues towards the East.

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The road from Tiznit to Goulimine

The road from Tiznit to Goulimine

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The road from Tiznit to Goulimine

A farm on the  road from Tiznit to Goulimine.

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Near  Goulimine.

 

Goulimine.

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On the Tighmert wadi, nine kilometers east of Guelmim, the herds drink.  They are the only real wealth since agriculture is parsimonious despite tenacious efforts.  The images, which always fit closely, are misleading in the assessment: one always has the impression  of a handful of camels while many herds number hundreds of heads.  When a "desert ship" is worth two thousand euros, it's not a jackpot, it's a maintained income.

 

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Goulimine.  Tighmert Oasis

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At the Guelmim market, a buyer and a seller do business: “Tope there! » concludes in all  languages. And a proverb says: "Why quarrel, if it's not about camels?" »

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Oasis of Tighmert, near Guelmim. The little boy is playing with a very colorful mask  carved from the thick base of a palm. The patterns match perfectly with  the decor of his house and that of the painted door, as neat as an embossed leather whose  nomads love. I was following a shepherdess who was leading her little herd through the  alleys of the oasis, when she took me to this "statue" of a master,  who seems to be posing, a thin cane in his right hand.

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Goulimine.  Tighmert Oasis.  

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Goulimine.  Tighmert Oasis

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Goulimine.  Tighmert Oasis

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Goulimine.

They passed before my eyes while I was having tea on the terrace of a café,  the helping hand of chance: three generations, grandmother,  mother and daughter, united in the same gesture, as in certain paintings  of the Renaissance illustrating the three ages of man.

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Goulimine.

Mountains of oranges from elsewhere,  such as I had never seen in ten years of Morocco!  A meticulous buyer seems to examine them one by one  while the seller, indifferent, is busy in the background.

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Goulimine.

Animal market.

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Goulimine.

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Goulimine.

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Goulimine.

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Goulimine.

Goulimine.

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Goulimine.

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Goulimine.

These two women  harvesting in a barley plan the weeds that will be given  to cattle. No plant strand can be lost.

Tarfaya.

 
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Tarfaya.

The sand continues its slow conquest, how not to think of Saint-Exupéry and the  Little Prince ? The monument of remembrance, the famous Breguet XIV of Aéropostale, appears  huge because of an optical effect; it is the man who is very small, his silhouette  fragile grows the biplane which is no more than two meters high. For a moment, believe yourself  in 1920, listen to the hum of the plane… Two surprising red balls shine  like insect eyes turning history into science fiction.

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Tarfaya.

The red dune

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Tarfaya.

The cliffs

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The cliffs of Akhfennir

The cliffs of Akhfennir, at eighty-four  kilometers north of Tarfaya, offer the most beautiful catches.  The technique of "double fishing" allows you to go up 25 meters  steepness of fish over 9 kilos and 1.20 meters long, without  break his thread. It is not a curiosity, it is a delight to savor the  evening at the Café Resto de Paris, on the edge of the cliff, bars, wolves,  soles, croakers which were still wriggling when you  seated at the table. And, if you're in the right season, lambs raised in  salt meadows on the small islands that dot the Naïla lagoon.  When the desert is greedy, it means you are in Morocco!

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The cliff of Akhfennir culminates at more than twenty-five meters, straight on the ocean ever  at rest although the tides are low. The desolate, sterile look, on the contrary, hides  a profusion of fish, each more edible than the other: it is a breeding ground  nature that escapes the ravages of big fishing and giant nets.  The Chenagla have perfected a very skilful technique for shoeing and lifting  fish weighing almost ten kilos. Further north, the Imragens fish with their feet in the water,  stretching their nets perpendicular to the shore.

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Tarfaya.

The Cliff Fishermen

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The cliffs of Akhfennir

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Tarfaya.