Our camels sat in 104 degrees of heat while we cowered under the shade of the only Acacia tree in the Ténéré desert for miles around. They usually faced the setting sun with their hooded eyes half closed as if they were meditating. Perhaps their connection with Islam was closer than we imagined. Myself, my three companions had already grown fond of our camels despite their occasional tendency to be aloof & belligerent. We were traveling through one of the last enclaves of the Tuareg of Niger reporting on the lives of these fiercely proud, nomadic people and at the same time assessing the prospect of a developing, small and sustainable tourism industry in the wake of civil war and a government hell bent on settling one of the last truly nomadic peoples.