Road Works

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We’re back from our trip to Vietnam, and I’ll be posting a few pieces from that visit.

For starters, I thought I’d put up this photo of the largest, cleanest, newest road I encountered in Vietnam (or almost anywhere else, for that matter).

Three lanes in each direction, lined with broad sidewalks and trees, with a fully landscaped median strip, it ran for several miles between nowhere and nowhere on the central coast outside Quy Nhon. It was utterly devoid of traffic – with the exception of our little bus and the guy up ahead of us on a loaded-up scooter.DSC02635

But since it’s harvest season and rice is out on the roadsides to dry, this super-sized six lane thoroughfare didn’t go unused – outside the small village where it began, it was used for rice drying.

A blurry shot taken from the bus…but there's the farmer's scooter and the large grain rake for turning the rice, which takes a day or two to dry.

A blurry shot taken from the bus…but there’s the farmer’s scooter and the large grain rake for turning the rice, which takes a day or two to dry.

Each square of rice represents the harvest of one small field, cut and threshed mostly by hand. The rice husks are used by some to fire small ovens.

Women separating rice from chaff near a gas station parking lot.

Women separating rice from chaff near a gas station parking lot.

Drivers make a careful arc around the rice, even on very busy streets.

What a cooperative approach to road use.

Rice drying in another coastal village.

Rice drying in another coastal village.

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