I was working at Denman College near Oxford on Monday and returned to my car in the late afternoon to find it covered in dust. I had no idea that we’d been in the middle of the Sahara Dust which has been blowing our way throughout the last couple of days.
The Met Office blog, where I found this image, explains it very well and puts the size of this “cloud” into perspective, too. That is some cloud!
Actually, we have a little Saharan sand of our own, sitting on the cloakroom windowsill with a couple of other sandy samples from other places on our travels.
It was collected here, in the Libyan Sahara, when we were there in 2010. I was tempted to telephone Chris Evan’s show this morning with my Top Tenuous story about the desert: There we were, standing miles from nowhere and our guide Mohammed took off his shoes and socks and stood wriggling his toes in the sand for a while, before uttering the memorable words,
“Aaaah, Weston Super Mare!”
The Sahara is such a magical place and there is indeed a lot of sand – rather more than at Weston Super Mare, as anyone who knows that place will confirm.
Mind you, I brought home a fair amount of the stuff in the shoes I wore that day. They are not shoes I wear very often, but every time I do, I still get a little pile of sand on the floor when I take them off. That means there’s probably a little Saharan sand on the floor of a few places in and around Machu Picchu as well.
The stuff gets everywhere!