Friday, 26 March 2010

Visit to footbridge construction site

Last week we walked to a footbridge that was being built near the Watapur district center, the next district east of Manogai, about a 15 mile or so drive down the road. Walking over the temporary timber bridge was TERRIFYING! The bridge was less than three feet wide and bounced as you walked, no hand rail, and an uneven surface - one false step and you were in the roiling river, and the fast current and the armored vest would have conspired to drown any poor soul. I considered myself lucky having made it across and back without getting on my hands and knees and crawling and totally embarassing myself. Yet kids by the dozens would romp across the bridge seemingly without a care in the world as well as old men leisurely strolling with walking sticks, oblivious to the . These footbridges serve to connect remote areas to population centers and are an important addition to Afghanistan infrastructure. They also serve as a vocational teaching tool for the young men in the area, as well as providing much needed employment. Some of the people that cross these bridges have walked for miles and hours from a remote mountain settlement to visit the district center or go to the shops. The bridge, once finished, was projected to cost around $50 K, and will be quite similar to the foot bridges seen in earlier posts.

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