I never tried Easy mode because of all the warnings that came with it. It is a horrifyingly incomplete version with restricted access to many areas and sidequests, and even one character is unavailable to join your party, so you're much better off going with Normal. As for the bridge west of SankT Leona, that is probably one of those restricted areas, as I heard the game on Easy pretty much ends after you reach the city or something. Sorry about that, but you'll have to play through on Normal to experience the full game. I don't think it's really that much harder, though.