A wandering bird's-eye overview of most things even vaguely related to travel, and an opportunity for writers, artists and photographers to contribute the historical, the hysterical, the quirky and quixotic... anything with heart.

5 years ago
Escaping the baking
Escaping the baking

With first sun, Burmese workers arrive crammed in crowded tractor trailers, the clatter of the clapped out engine jarring.

The road from exotic templed plains is already baking, us escaping eastwards to the cool of the mountains, among the buses, cars, trucks and vans. Motorbikes and oxcarts dodge patchwork goats and wandering cattle. All vie for a space on these winding roads. 

The crews are dropped off here and there, to fix crumbling bends: women in Coolie sampan hats, long dark skirts and checked shirts shovel and haul buckets of gravel. Faces are sweat and dust laden, daubed with ground bark: the ubiquitous Burmese make-up and protection from a fierce sun.

44-gallon drums stand in groups: asphalt for the mending. The molten, mess bubbling in coal-fired cauldrons, steaming and stirred by a cross-legged boy on a raised wooden bench.


Photo: The  Kalaw  Crew - Kalaw, Myanmar _ Ian Cochrane