I made it! I’m in Bangladesh!
And what a journey it was! I met some great people and got to see both the tallest building in the world in Dubai AND saw Mt. Everest. It was a long, exhausting but incredible 25+ hours of traveling. I would gladly do it again!
Dhaka is beautiful! It’s rugged and raw and chaotic and ridiculous, but beautiful. Daniel picked me up from the airport (after I waited for almost an hour to get through customs and get my bags) and we set off for Daniel and Tara’s apartment.
Driving was thrilling. So many people and cars and laws didn’t get followed very often, if at all. Maybe I’m a risk junkie, but driving so recklessly was actually really fun.
The strange part is this: I’ve seen Dhaka before. The run down buildings, the bright colors, the labor without power tools and the lack of street signs…even down to the typical middle eastern/Asian man in a tan shirt and pants and the women in various states of cover. In movies, documentaries, magazines, newspaper articles…I’ve seen it before. But not like this. Not up close.
Flying from Dubai, which had the world’s tallest building, a man made mountain and TONS of lights to humble Dhaka, with no lights, simple structures and bare bones architecture made it real. What I was seeing wasn’t a picture anymore…I was seeing a reality. Tara showed me their apartment and the view from their windows and porches and it all seemed like I was looking at it all through a haze. Like I was still seeing the things I was seeing through the lens of an Economist article on the economy of the poor or a documentary about young girls in brothels in India.
What I’ve read and heard about, what I’ve wanted to see for years, is real. I knew it was real, but it’s a reality…this is more real than the bubble that I live in as an American. And I hope that this trip can illuminate that even more.