a bridge of ancient vines
In the Indian state of Meghalaya, there exist stunningly intricate bridge systems made from the ancient vines and roots of the native Ficus Elastica (rubber tree). Using hollowed out trees to create root guidance systems, the roots and vines of the rubber tree are stretched across fast-flowing rivers and streams to form sturdy bridge systems. A mature bridge can hold the weight of more than 50 people at a time! Can't you just imagine how this bridge might feel underneath you? Sort of springy and sinewy? Or how it might smell? Traditional wooden bridges could not survive in Meghalaya due to the significant rainfall that is characteristic to the region. These bridges, still alive, still growing, gain strength over time. Truly awe-inspiring! This is nature and humankind interacting in a most wondrous way.