Monday, February 15, 2010

Worst Road

The road from Da lat to Phan Thiet goes through some mountain passes and some of the more remote and impoverished areas I have seen here.  Going through these remote villages (if they even are that), I couldn't help but think how anyone ended up there.  One of the more substantial settlement looked like it had built by the government for a local minority group.  The road twisted through this hard land, and for itself it seemed as if time and government had forgotten it.  There where parts of the road entirely missing, parts where it was safer to drive off the side of the road, and parts where it appeared the pavement had erupted forming a crater with a ring of debris.  This made the going tough, but none of the students on their way home for the holidays seemed to mind.  One young man sat the entire six hours on the bus with a desktop computer on his lap.  I took this to and from Phan Thiet.  To make matters worse on the way back as we were leaving the worst section of road behind us and winding our way up steep mountain terrain we became stranded by a piece of bridging that had fallen off the back of a tractor-tralier.  We pulled up to find a line of trucks stopped in the road.  I followed the bus driver and out of the bus to get a stretch of the legs and noticed that the truck drivers had logs behind their tires indicating to me that we were going nowhere anytime soon.  Whatever goods the trucks were carrying, most likely seafood from the coast, were beginning to thaw and dump water along the road.  They had already brought a crane in, but it seemed as if they were to be here a while.  I watched as a car pulled up to bring some of the men dinner, and found this to be an ominous omen.  They sat and played cards and one slept in a makeshift hammock under the bridge section.  Things could have turned out worse for us though.  We were lucky.  It happened that a bus of equal size to us was on its way to Phan Thiet and trapped on the other side of the accident.  We managed to switch buses and cargo and once everything was settled between the two parties we were back on way along the worst road I traveled so far in Vietnam.

1 comment:

  1. and that is worst than our road crews
    uncle jimmy