Sudan, Travel

Khartoum at dawn

I ‘ve just arrived in Khartoum after a four-year gap, and this morning between 5 a.m. and 6 a.m., it was pretty magical.

Pix Khartoum shepherds
Khartoum shepherds feed their flock in the early morning

After a sleepless, jetlagged night, I went up to the rooftop of the Bougainvilla Guest House, where I’m staying.

It was still dark, the moon and stars were out, and a cool breeze swept across the patio. Four or five mosques started competing with each other, and the mullahs’ prayers bounced all around the darkened city.

I stayed up there until the skies began to lighten, and the sun landed on the concrete buildings below and little birds with fanned tails flitted around the dirt streets. Khartoum by day is a hot and dusty city, so it was neat to see it this way.

No one in the city seemed in a hurry to wake up. A donkey cart and driver ambled across the dirt square below, and the air smelled of burnt sand. I wandered along one of the streets, where a few sleepy people were heading to work.

And after breakfast I’ll have all the fun of sorting out registering with the police and getting a SIM card.

(Posted Sat. Nov.19, 2011 by Alison Bate)

2 thoughts on “Khartoum at dawn”

  1. Happy to hear you’ve arrived safely. Fascinated about the tech toys you chose. I agree, but would add a smartphone. I travel with my Android phone and it’s been a godsend. My toys, incl camera gear, take more space than my clothes on long trips and weigh more!
    Take care … and keep the posts coming. I will read every one with great glee!

  2. Thanks, Julie. Having just returned from Sudan, I would now add that the cellphone was the most useful tech toy I took..and my camera, of course (a Canon PowerShot SX220).

    Although the little portable I took (HP 10.1” Intel Atom N455 Netbook) worked fine, I found it more enjoyable just writing in longhand or going to an internet cafe than dragging the computer around everywhere with me.

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