Bangladesh: A Very Long Day (Part 2)
I saw a lot of rice paddies alongside the train tracks, and I'm reminded of the similar scenes from my home country of the Philippines. Instantly I remember an old Filipino folk song about planting rice. I'd like to share the lyrics with you.
Planting rice is never fun
Bent from morn till the set of sun,
Cannot stand and cannot sit,
Cannot rest for a little bit.
Oh, come friends and let us homeward take our way,
Now we rest until the dawn is gray,
Sleep, welcome sleep, we need to keep us strong
Morn brings another workday long.
Oh, my back is like to break,
Oh, my bones with the damp still ache,
And my legs are numb and set
For their long soaking on the wet.
It is hard to be so poor
And such sorrow and pain endure,
You must move your arms about,
Or you'll find you must go without.
These kids are trying to catch fish by removing the water from one part to another.
Another man trying to catch fish.
People were planting long after the sun has set.
I ask my husband what other crops they plant when the rice is harvested. He said, they don't rotate crops, they plant and harvest rice all year long. My minimal knowledge of agriculture has told me to speak out against soil erosion or something to that effect. Bangladesh is starting to realize the value of crop rotation for soil health and to prevent soil erosion, he said, although they are taking baby steps towards this undertaking.