Thursday, August 07, 2008
Moving through the oldest streets of Dhaka isn't easy or pleasant, though it is fascinating. The loopy tangles of wiring everywhere and paving that drops off to holes or mud show just how much the infrastructure has been stretched to fit in a population booming from migration and births. The garbage in streets, women and men hauling water and dilapidated housing all signaled services beyond coping. We stood out, of course, trooping through all of this with cameras. Some people posed though or just stopped dead in their tracks to watch our coworker Zahid, who is from Dhaka and immensely proud of its 400-year history, lecture on architecture or religion. They laughed at our ignorance about turtle meat and tamarind then went back to work, selling fish or sorting garlic gloves or peddling fruit and sweets.