National Geographic : 1958 May
ready, quite prepared to dole out rations of sardines for breakfast, lunch, and dinner for the next several days, when suddenly we saw a car break through the Stygian gloom. A military road engineer in a Dodge Power Wagon was headed home on leave after a year spent in the remote desert. He told us not even the Sahara's worst sandstorm could stop him! He was followed by another truck with an Arab driver. He agreed to let us join him, put us between the two trucks, cautioned us to keep our eyes glued on his tail light, and off we went. The next three hours were a nightmare. All we could see was his dim rear light not the ground or anything around us. How he found his way, we never discovered. He must have had a homing instinct. And when we got to Ouargla it was raining. 700 It is not supposed to rain in Ouargla in April, but it was raining, nonetheless, in heavy, cold torrents. An Algerian guard at the outskirts of the oasis stopped us to look at our papers. He seemed frightened and wanted to talk to someone. "First these sandstorms!" he said. "Now rain. What is going to happen next?" Floodwaters Maroon Sahara Travelers We stopped for the night in Ouargla and continued on to Ghardaia the next day. There was no more sand in the air; the rain had cleared it. But the sky was ominously black and the wind still gale force. Just before nightfall we came into sight of the town. Visions of hot baths and good food danced before our eyes, because Ghardaia has one of the best hotels in the entire Sahara.