Day 36: Dakar to Bamako
We pull out of Dakar twenty-one minutes late and run for a while past red-brick, red-tiled sheds. These soon give way to a depressing run of goat-attended rubbish dumps and people squatting down beneath fading signs that read 'Défense d'Uriner et Déposer ses Ordures' (No Urinating or Dumping of Rubbish).
The train is a huge consumer unit, a small town on wheels, and wherever we stop we attract crowds of suppliers. As we crawl through the suburbs of Dakar it's like taking a train through the middle of a department store. On both sides of us are piles of handbags, underwear, men's fashion, ladies fashion, shoes, scarves, robes and hats. All within inches of our rumbling steel wheels.
The restaurant car is going to be a vital part of our survival strategy. First signs are encouraging. It's comfortable enough, with a mural painted at one end, and not too busy, as most of the passengers bring their own food or buy at the window.
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- Series: Sahara
- Day: 36
- Country/sea: Senegal
- Place: Dakar
- Book page no: 115
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