The “King” of the Tuaregs, as Ali calls him, has put at our disposal the empty storeroom as a clinic. Today is the first appointment that we have with the sick.


The “king”, himself, has Ali cure his eyes, damaged by the sandy wind of the desert. His remedy is made from trees and the shells of the Niger river.

About 10 people have arrived this morning, women and children, but they say to us that not all have been able to come because they could not walk.
After having cured them all we decided to ask Ibrahim to bring us by car to the tents of those who had not been able to come.
Our patients have told us that their place is nearby, and we loaded all of them in the car.

When a Tuareg tells you “near”, this does not have the same meaning as for us. It is like in Timbuktu where the word “immediately” means at least half an hour, and “soon” means one or two hours.
The tents of the Tuaregs were at least 6 km from the well.


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Ali’s massages to the old Tuaregs with his Hippopotami oil always lightens their pain in a spectacular way. He cures the tent chief while the other ill people are called from the other tents around.


We are soon surrounded by a number of women and children affected with flu, fever, skin diseases, joint pains etc…
We try to teach the women that bathing the children is the basic requirement for their health. But when water is so scarse, what can we do?
We can only hope that our well will give abundant water.
They explain to us that if our well produces enough water they will all shift to there and will even build earth houses instead of tents. They are stuck here because a nearby well gives water for their animals.  But this water is not drinkable for them.  They have to bring drinking water by camel every day from a distant well.


Ali has soon finished all his medicines and the women turn to me for cure


For the smaller ones, when they have a cold, Lavender essential oil, and for fever, ginger oil on their feet. For the bigger ones I exchange Lavender with Mental Sport, which is more balsamic.



Against tooth ache I use clove essential oil



It is the pain to her legs that have stopped this old woman from coming to the appointment

By the end of the day we are tired and happy. We have worked well. Healing the people as we do, without having them pay, procures us such a satisfaction as I have never known before, even when in one day I have earned a lot of money.
It is a happiness without exaltation, stable and deep. Ali had already spoken to me about this but it is only since I accompany him in his tours that I have understood what he meant.
This first experience with the weekly appointment for the sick has taught us that it is not sufficient to wait for the patients in our clinic by the well. Many among women, elderly and children cannot walk over long distances or even leave the tent for several hours.
It is necessary that we go to them.

In this story all the pieces come together by themselves as if they were pieces of a puzzle, this is why I recognize the hand of Allah that ordains all; a few days ago, a wealthy friend of mine from Timbuktu has proposed to me to regularly lend to Ali his new Nissan car for our tours of “desert doctors”. We shall not even have to bother about the petrol, he will care about that himself.

When I told this to Ali he smiled saying: “Your friend has taken up the flag”.

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