The other day Hub and I were getting into the car when I noticed that it was filthy.  It looked as if sand or dust had mixed in with the rain and spattered it all over.  Everyone else’s car was the same.

Joking, I said to Hub ‘it looks like the harmattan.’  Memories of the time we lived in Nigeria, and the thick dust at the height of the dry season, which blew from the Sahara and covered everything.  There was no point in dusting and cleaning.  It was as bad after 5 minutes as it had been before.

I was intrigued to discover, later that day on the weather forecast, that the messy stuff on the cars is exactly that – fine harmattan dust and sand from the Sahara.

Makes you realise once again that we’re all ecologically connected…

Harmattan, from

32 thoughts on “SAHARA MEMORIES

  1. I experienced something similar in Israel,called the Hamsin. Great for creating sore eyes, coughs and a general dusty covering.

    At home, here, we’ve had experiences of fine red dust covering everything. Somewhere along the way, I took photos. Then, in more recent memory, there was the fall out of the two Icelandic volcano eruptions and the miniscule lethal jagged blades of volcanic dust they produced. I did photograph the outfall on my car and post it. At the time, the CEO of Ryanair was drumming up pressure to get flying again, even with the risks that the fallout posed.


  2. My car is filthy but we have not got so much smog…guess it is the aircraft dispersing. Strange though, when I got up yesterday there was an ‘odd smell’ it was sorta sweet.


    1. Another blog friend who lives 20 miles from an airport says she quite often can smell aviation fuel … the media haven’t said anything about pollution for years, but now we find it is still a problem.


      1. Yes there is a smell when the weather is cold…but this was different. I have the planes flying within a mile now since I moved….noise is not a problem as they are not that bad (or I got used to it)…. Normally smells like burnt toast.

        P xx


      2. I braved the ‘garden’ and ate my small meal out there. Bought some cough med from Tesco early this morning and more lemsip capsules. Not feeling so bad and the cough…well is ok till I open my mouth to talk… 😉 (better keep it closed).

        No serious…I have a good immune system, never go to doctors if I can help it.

        P xx


  3. Just heard about this on the news when in one of my client’s houses…. and I have had asthma-ish-ness this week and now I know why. And in my bicycle light beam this evening could see dust swirling about 8|

    Tonight on the radio they were talking about food shortages and violence being linked etc and food shortages due to climate change and Russia not exporting wheat badly affected Eygpt who then had their riots and were clamouring for food….:no: ‘The ende of the Worruld is nigh!’ 8|


    1. I think it’s been going on for millennia 😦 Hope the smog clears for you soon :yes: It must be especially miserable for people with chest and breathing problems :no:


      1. Yes there were those awful London smogs ‘peasoupers’ that killed loads and loads of people weren’t there when everybody had coal fires….

        Have to say I’m all a bit coughy and tight chested as been out cycling my round in it and it was STINKY – burnt stinky….. managed to get a smile out of nasty man on my round when I told him if he suddenly had an irrisistable urge to go for a run, to fight the urge mercilessly due to the pollution at the moment unless he wanted his lungs filled with filthy sand…. ;)Always sooooo satisfying to get the sour ones to smile in spite of themselves 🙂


    1. Yes, it’s interesting that pollution has not been on the media agenda for some time. It’s obviously still a problem. Maybe the Clean Air Act needs updating!


    1. Pollution hasn’t been mentioned in the press for ages – interesting to find that sometimes it’s still so bad. Shows we are a global village – what affects one country can affect others too!


  4. The only time I’ve encountered this film on a car was on a hired one in Minorca. The air in Suffolk is very hazy today and the sun has hardly come through. We do have days when we can smell aviation fuel after American transport planes are arriving to land about twenty miles away.


    1. People are beginning to talk about air pollution again – it’s been out of fashion with the media for some time, but clearly, it is still an issue. Aviation fuel – ugh!


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