Your Bridge is Under Water

Sunday, 23 October 2011

The Bangkok floods have been getting the media attention but the message from Burma (Myanmar) was straightforward: ‘Guys your bridge is under the water. Inle Lake and surrounding are flooded.’

Back in 2001 Lonely Planet financed a 330metre long bridge to connect the floating village of Maing Thauk with the lakeside. Most of the village facilities were on dry land – the schools, health centre, monastery and so on – while the villagers themselves mainly lived in stilt houses out on the lake. The villagers had to ferry their kids to school by canoe so the children often had to leave for school very early, because their parents were going fishing or to work in their fields. At the other end of the day the kids had to hang around waiting for their parents to finish work before they could get home. Building a bridge from the village homes to the ‘land village’ solved the problem and also let people walk to the health centre. We provided the cash for the materials, the villagers did all the hard work and when I visited Inle Lake again in 2002 I got to walk out on the LP bridge. ▼
LP Bridge

I’d have trouble doing that today, the bridge is submerged. ▼
bridge submerged