Wednesday, 29 April 2009
The Rosso border...
Our first taste of Mauritania necessitated a hightly 'interesting' border crossing at a town called Rosso involving a river crossing by row boat which included an unfathomable 'mid-river-transfer-with-bags' to another boat before continuing to the other side.
On disembarking we were confronted by uniformed Mauritanian border security accompanied by the seemingly essential West African element of 'at least 6 different people shouting at you & attempting to make you follow them somewhere'.
In this case because 'uniform man' now has our passports we follow him like obedient ducklings despite the efforts of various random people attempting to get our attention.
When we eventually reach the offices (the short walk is punctuated by uniform man stopping to send the odd text & chatting to a lady friend on the way) the passports are studied in slow motion by a fat man after which we are left to wait an incredibly long time in a corridor with a goat, while at least 12 different people in another room indulge in more slow motion scrutiny of our passports.
Eventually uniform man reappears & indicates for us to follow him (cue 'at least 6 different people shouting at you & attempting to make you follow them somewhere) then via some currency exchange involving a little bit of low level bribery we're through to our transport* to Nouakchott...
*see Taxi Brousse Top Trumps - http://steveafricatrip.blogspot.com/2009/04/taxi-brousse-top-trumps-rules.html