The Oasis of Siwa, luxuriant exception in the harsh, arid desert. Vanilla absolute. A stretch of green lost in an endless sea of sand. Oil of cinnamon leaf. Narrow ochre and yellow-hued streets, clay lace vestiges, houses with brightly coloured doors. Narcissus absolute. The radiant greens of olive trees and palm leaves, the browns and violets of sun-dried dates. Oil of incense. Siwa, a mirage, a bottomless well of desired visions.