Moving through villages and along roadways I got the chance to see the emergence of the very new and the blooming of the traditional. The mountain of Watermelons is staged for the taking, touch one and the pile, like water, will become free-flowing melons. The generators turned into cargo carriers. A few minutes later a scooter has become a logging truck. The cargo of cut and peeled logs is being transported by a Honda Dream. A Honda 150 can carry a family of 5, a load of logs, a dozen mattresses and even double as a two wheeled taxi. In a lawless frontier it is very amazing to see how ingenuity meets needs with solutions that will make every bureaucrat blush. No permits, no tickets, no problem!
A few kilometeres down the road and a Honda is hauling a dream team. These oxen are on their way to market. Carried to their next resting place in a trailer hauled by a 150 cc motor bike. There was a time oxen ploughed fields, carried people and were the power that ran the farm. Yes, we saw ox carts (even rode in them), yes we saw oxen plowing fields but the Honda dream has aligned the stars to effect a replacement.
Along the way basic staples lined the sidewalks. Nothing more basic than rice, nothing more basic for the local diet, nothing more basic to get through the hot season. The dry season –when nothing grows without water. Revisiting the roadways of the kingdom and seeing the evolution from Animism to Hinduism to Buddhism — one wonders whether the next road trip will bring another god or the merger of all gods. The road leads the way. The people will find their way.