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Scrolling down a cobblestone alley to the bottom of the page where a white-thobed Algerian is intentionally but unknowingly the focal point of Thomas J. Abercrombie’s photo composition.

Another time, while traveling through Saudi Arabia’s Empty Quarter, Mr Abercrombie’s sport-utility vehicle broke down, forcing him to repair the radiator hose with items from his first-aid kit and patch another leak with a poultice of camel dung and barley paste.

A passageway in Algeria. Photograph by Thomas J. Abercrombie, National Geographic Creative (year unknown)

A passageway in Algeria. Photograph by Thomas J. Abercrombie, National Geographic Creative (year unknown)

Here at the bottom of the page, after scrolling down a cobblestone alley, we find Mr Abercrombie as a senior photographer and writer for National Geographic magazine, who had traveled to all seven continents in a career spanning over 40 years, three decades of which were spent as the magazine’s Middle Eastern expert covering Morocco to Afghanistan, where he once slipped off his yak and narrowly escaped plunging into a 1,000-foot chasm.

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