Dust in the Wind

On a blistering June day in West and see what appears to be a blood-red curtain billowing the length of the horizon. When the curtain arrives, daylight disappears, and the land is covered in a dark red, gritty-tasting night. Going inside offers little protection—windblown dust soon penetrates shutters and plaster cracks, leaving a thin red layer everywhere; rooms feel like mine shafts. This is a dust storm in Africa’s arid Sahelian band, the southern fringe of the Sahara Desert from Mauritania to Chad.


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