Photograph by Rebecca Hale, NGM Staff
Behind the Lens
What’s your favorite item here?
The watch. A jewelry store in Tripoli had this Qaddafi watch that was a real rarity. The number is for the 39th anniversary of Qaddafi’s rule. I didn’t realize that in a few years they wouldn’t be making them anymore.
What drew you to the other objects?
The knife [at right] is a classic Tuareg knife; you find these in the central Sahara. The locals use it to open a tuna can or slit a goat’s throat. I thought it’d be a great letter opener. The sand from the Libyan border is very old. I put it in an empty coffee jar. The bills will soon be a rarity too. When I was in Libya last year, the people were tired of waiting for new money to be issued.
Is your house messy?
I have a big house, and there’s a lot of travel debris in it. My wife sometimes calls it the “museum of natural history.”