(written by Ty Theavy, edited by Louisa Lopez from England)
Monday, 14 March 2011, Photos: Internet
Koh Kong: This bridge was finished in 2008 and opened by the Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen. The bridge was a donation from the Thai government. It was built by Narat, a private Thai construction company, and used Thai and Cambodian specialists. This bridge has a strong base that took 2 months to build the base poles, put deep into the river, and its columns were brought by boat from Thailand, but its beams were loaded by trucks from Tatai where they were concreted.
Can you guess how much each labourer was paid? Just 12,000 riels (3 dollars) per person per day! Most of the labourers were people from around here.
The bridge is now a popular place for locals to enjoy the surrounding views at night, sitting and chatting, looking up at the sky, the stars and the moon in the waxing months. In Cambodia the moon is only visible every second month, this is called the waxing month, the next month is the waning month.
There is a story about this bridge, told by one of the local men. Recently, a villager fell in love with a girl after they had met each other at a religious ceremony, in the nearby monastery of Roung Kiri. Until recently there was a coconut tree leaning towards the river, and here they would meet, and they vowed to love each other for ever. They would always meet by the coconut tree and sit on the bridge. One day the boy waited for the girl to come but she did not. This was because her mother had found out about their secret meetings and she did not approve because Cambodian culture is very strict and does not allow sex before marriage. So her mother decided to marry her to a rich man.