As I checked my email this morning, I found WordPress resumed their old initiative called word prompt. This week’s word prompt was ‘Bridge’. Thanks to WordPress, I got an opportunity to reminisce over those lovely remembrances
A brief introduction: To Bridges
When I first thought of the word bridge, I got flashes of all the bridges in my life so I chose to continue this train of thought in the most literal sense. And why not, I literally did have great stories surrounding bridges. From encountering high altitude bridges in Uttarakhand to crossing a footbridge to reach Nepal.
It’s only now when I look back that I realise bridges held special significance for me
Another brief introduction: To Bridges in the Himalayas
( excuse me for putting so much emphasis on the context, I really do want you to understand the awe behind my bridges )
Meet the bridges of Kuling
After graduation, I travelled 1,889.6 km from Mumbai to Lohajung, a small village located in the Chamoli district of Uttarakhand. I worked on developing a sustainable waste management system for the local Himalayan communities.
While I was in Lohajung, my team and I worked in nearby villages such as kuling and wan as well. You’ll hear more about them later in this post. Kuling holds fond memories for me. When I think back to kuling, I remember beautiful prayer flags fluttering in the wind, beautiful elders smiling as we explore their village. Kuling had merely 300 occupants.
Neha, and I still vividly remember in the month of July 2018, there was a huge cloudburst that ended up dismantling the whole village leaving it uninhabitable. The locals lost most of their land and livelihood. They then had to move across the mountain to restart their lives. While the damage was created, laura, Neha and I wanted to help out in any way possible. Which of course was made possible after a week when the locals had made a handmade bridge.
Meet the bridges of Tharali
To my astonishment, within a month the government trucks began pouring into kuling with the construction of a new metal bridge. The reason it took a month was that a town, 40 km away called Tharali also was affected severely by the cloud burst to render everyone hopeless, so the government had to create a bridge first there and then move forward to finally reach us.
The number of bridges built in the subsequent months was phenomenal. (It would have certainly been cool if I had some bridge stats here). Anyway, I learned bridges are truly a medium in connecting people, especially in times of crisis.
The mere fact the government was so fast in acting made me all the more grateful and proud to be a citizen in the country. A village that was unknown to most of my fellow citizens, the government knew about and built a bridge.
Meet the broken bridges of wan
Further ahead of kuling, precisely 6 more km lies a village called Wan. Now Wan had a collection of bridges from the most absurd, lopsided, abandoned bridges to bridges in water, band finally our favourite the collapsed bridge. I always knew there would be a time to talk bout it.
Tell me about the metaphysical bridges in your life or that you may have crossed in your life