English Notes → Hitch-Hiking Across the Sahara
1. Give an idea of the size of the Sahara. How is it compared with England?
The size of the Sahara is very large. It is very vast and extensive. It is bigger than England which is a large country. We cannot find England if a giant puts it in the middle of this great desert. It is full of sand which is spreading far and wide.
2. What had Christopher’s foster-mother to do with his desire to see distant places?
When he was a small child, he used to be cheeky and naughty. His foster-mother used to threaten him to send him to Timbuktu to silence him. It is a distant place in the great desert. But, instead of becoming afraid, he desired to see that place one day. It showed that he was enterprising since childhood.
3. How did he manage to get a seat in the weapons carrier?
Christopher was travelling in a slow moving truck. It was very painful experience for him. Suddenly, a weapons carrier overtook them. He stopped the truck and requested the lieutenant to give him a lift. He told Christopher that strict military laws did not allow civilians to be taken along. Christopher showed him a permit of war ministry. This permit had expired but, fortunately, the lieutenant did not notice it and allowed him in his truck.
4. What was the most noticeable feature of the desert city named Ghardaia?
The most noticeable feature of the desert city named Ghardaia was its numerous ant stickier flies. All the food items seemed to be covered with flies. These flies did not hesitate to follow food into the mouth of the eaters. Even the children were not easily recognizable. Their faces were constantly covered with flies. It showed that the condition of cleanliness was very bad and dirty here.
5. How did they manage to drive the heavy truck in the trackless desert with its soft sand?
The driver of the truck drove it very skillfully. Sometimes, it was difficult to drive it on soft sand. They used to take out strips of iron from the truck and place them in front of it. Then it was easy to drive the truck. After crossing the soft sand, they collected these iron strips and loaded them back into the truck.