|Pointe Noire's main drag, Avenue du General de Gaulle|
|Oil rig view from Pointe Noire's beach|
Meanwhile a worker at the exceedingly seedy hotel (it still costs $64 a night) has latched on to me - my Passepartout. He's taken me to the central market to change money, found a way to do all my laundry for $20, instead of $2 a shirt, and now he's offering me his sister 'for special price.'
But the gorge at Diosso, a few miles north of Pointe Noire, is indeed spectacular - jagged red cliffs several hundred feet high amid luxuriant green rain forest, with smaller ridges and pinnacles in the huge bowl beneath. Kids of course block off the track to the viewing point to get a dollar – and why not? They don`t have many other opportunities to make a buck. Diosso is where the kings of the Loango kingdom are buried and there`s a scruffy tin-roofed museum that is closed anyway on weekdays. On the way back, a police checkpoint tries to stop the taxi for the regulation bribe but the driver just speeds through, shouting that he has already coughed up on the way going - not true, but they don`t shoot.
|Pointe Noire-Brazzaville railway line as rubbish dup|