Two camels are waiting behind houses. We have not seen many camels in Foggâret-ez-Zoûa but more donkeys. Foggaret is a poor oasis and camels are expensive animals. Not everybody can own a camel. Donkeys are more affordable and are also very well fit for the desert.
Some boys played on the bank of the sebkha. As water evaporates, the water of sebkhas is often more or less salty. It does not seem that this particular sebkha had a high salt content as the boys drank its water.
As is most oasis, water flowing in the oasis is naturally collected in the lowest part of the place. In the back ground, the palm grove with tall plants.
In the second photo, I have made an enlargement in order to identify the crop. I feel this might be wheat. In the middle of the enlargement, a group of three women are trying to hide from the visitors.
In the oasis of the Sahara, a seguia or seghia is a small channel that carries water. There is a whole network of seguia that allow water to reach every part of the oasis. Each seguia is opened a given time (established and ruled by the mosque) so that each has its share of water.
After a while, some of the 10-12 years old dare to come closer and talk.
The second photo is an enlargement of the first photo, and shows more clearly that the boy on the right wore a superb dark blue lounge suit with an elegant hat of the same color. That must have been a gift from previous visitors, may be several years ago as it looked seriously worn out!
During all the time we stayed in Foggâret-ez-Zoûa, we saw many women carrying loads on their head. Of course, it would have been improper to take a close photo of them (and they would have escaped) but I took several long distance shots that show how busy the oasis is all the time.
Not all women try to escape the camera, given that they are far enough. This one was sat in the sand with a little kid and though she obviously have seen that I am taking a photo does not care.
Note that all the inhabitants in Foggâret-ez-Zoûa are very dark skinned
Though I took this photo from far away, with tele lens, the woman carrying a load (wood, hay?) on her head had spotted me and run to hide herself.
Actually, she was not alone: I have enlarged the center of the photo and discovered than another woman was already hidden behind the trunk of the palm tree. A part of her garment can be seen at the bottom, on the right, while her load is showing on both sides of the trunk!
May be she was not hiding from the camera but hiding from us, camera or not!
A small flock of sheep is trying to find something to eat!
Note than in the Sahara, sheep are tall and look almost like goats. Their fleece is not curled and does not look like wool. They have straight hair and a coat like a cow or a goat.
Small children are curious about the visitors but workers do not care and do not stop what they are doing.
On the first photo, two boys are riding donkeys loaded with “couffins”.
On the second photo, a man is loading other “couffins” on a donkey. These “couffins” are made of plaited palm tree leaves.
Note that a "couffin" is a bag and not a coffin!
A group of other little girls were hidden in the palm grove and watched behind the plaited reeds panels designed to protect the grove from sand winds. After a while, a large group went out of their hide but nevertheless stayed at reasonable distance!
A group of younger girls, just out of school stay half hidden behind a half decayed banco wall to watch securely the intruders! They are curious and would like to know more about them but are afraid on getting closer!
At the entrance into the village, two boys are wandering on who can be those unknown visitors, that nobody has ever met, that were not forecast. Are they sent by the walli (the perfect, head of the willaya) for some control. Hmm, better stay at some distance!
The village of Foggâret-ez-Zoûa is literally buried in sand, which is everywhere.
The first photo shows a group of three women carrying on their head wood for the cooking.
The second photo shows two girls trying to drive a donkey.