Tuesday, 17 July 2007

Travels in Bangladesh

I remember when my husband and I travelled in a convoy to a tea plantation for the Easter holiday whilst we were living in Bangladesh a few years ago. It took all day to cover the fifty miles or so to get there, as we had to catch ferries to cross the numerous twisting tentacles of the country’s rivers and the roads were not good. One of our vehicles got a puncture. There are few garages, no roadside rescue services, not many telephones and little mobile coverage in Bangladesh so a breakdown of any sort is a major calamity. We pulled up in a tiny village causing a sensation in the sleepy backwater, which had never seen so many vehicles. The entire village turned out to help; some with tools that they thought might be of use such as axes, hammers and saws. They then grouped around and watched with fascinated interest as the wheel was taken off and the spare attached. The whole process took just a few minutes but by the time we had thanked our well-wishers, politely refused offers of tea (there are no public lavatories in Bangladesh) and got going again we had made new friends who would not forget the day we came to their village.

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