"No problem." I said. "I'll take pictures".
Except for one short excursion with Bouj to visit the Alamaine Choffee library (see next post), and another to Poulet D'or for lunch, we spent the day at Hotel La Maison, recovering, relaxing, eating, drinking, and taking pictures.
La Maison does not serve lunch, so we walked down the street to one of Wes' guidebook recommendations - Poulet D'or. Beef brochette and steak frittes. Very good.
Marq DeVillier's book "Timbuktu" through abdominal osmosis, I was offered this melon as an afternoon snack.
... dessert (forgot to take the picture before inhaling the home made ice cream sundae with chocolate syrup).
Our dinner companions are Hamidou and Mohamet, associates of my brother working on a manuscript digital archiving project. Over dinner we planned our excursions for Tuesday.
Between Sigrid and I, we literally took thousands of pictures on this trip. The most astonishing thing, is to discover that we did not take enough. The real story of Hotel La Maison, are the proprietor/owners Awa and her mother, and we managed to get pictures of neither. Awa runs the hotel, and her mother runs the kitchen. The two of them purchased this residential property on a back street of Timbuktu, and acted as the general contractors, architects, and interior designers renovating it into a perfect boutique hotel. They expected the project to last four months, but it took eighteen. The challenges of two women managing local craftsman in this patriarchal society were not trivial. Awa told us she would never do anything like this again. From our perspective, the result was incredible. This is not just the best hotel in Timbuktu, but a wonderful boutique hotel that we would be delighted with if it was in Paris, or London or San Francisco. Without any advertising or promotion, it has been booked solid since it opened a year ago. Not surprising. The food and hotel are first rate.
MW RECOMMENDED: Hotel La Maison
It is a gem in the dust.