“People in Timbuktu either adapt or leave. As the canal dried up and the winds of rain increasingly brought dust, Mahamane Alphady’s father – “or it could have been my grandfather” – dug a hole. So did all the other market gardeners, creating dozens of craters that fed on the canal’s run-off water. Vegetables grew on their walls. But every year they had to dig deeper. In 1973, his father gave up.” Alex Duval Smith on Timbuktu

and photos by Sean Smith

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