Where else do you see more donkey carts rumbling along the road than cars? The oasis of Siwa is still far remote from everything, even though there are now street lamps that look as if they had strayed here from Paris. A thicket of date palms, two large salt lakes and in the background the dunes of the Great Sand Sea. In the middle of it all is the town of Siwa, in the centre of which the ruins of the old town are lurking. Built of salty mud bricks, it was abandoned not quite 100 years ago after a three days of rain.