Not Getting Far in Myanmar

After arriving in Yangon, I  caught a taxi and headed to my accommodations. It was obvious from the start things would be different here… the steering wheel was on the right like in Thailand but the car also drove on the right like in the USA. I was confused and made a note to be extra cautious crossing streets. I was also perplexed as to why it took over 90 minutes to drive 10 miles. Traffic is a serious understatement. I was excited to finally arrive in “Chinatown” and be shown to my “room”. It made me think, Japan.

While the pod may look a bit like a coffin, it really wasn’t bad. It had its own light, outlets, a/c vent, and blackout curtain. Not all these things are offered everywhere. Having touched on the subject, I wondered if the tombs above had been relocated. In the mid-90’s, cemeteries near the city center were moved to make way for new developments. I don’t know why the tombs were painted blue.

Speaking of paint, this moving arowana represents Yangon street art well.

Speaking of fish, I was surprised to find these finned friends in the available wash water in a bathroom. I was also amused by the instructions on how to use the toilet.

smile

Speaking of friends, here are a few we met on our mountain bike tour. Say cheese!

Well, I don’t know if the other “ferry” passengers would call us friends.

thanaka

Our best friend was Michael. Freshly applied sunblock is much more visible on him.

He showed us how to make thanaka sunblock, rubber bands, and paan.

He led us, fed us, and kept us in water.

 There are lots of roadside water stations. This lake temple is located near Twantay.

It’s referred to as “Snake Temple” for obvious reasons. Watch where you step or sit!

random

Michael is a bicycle guide for Uncharted Horizons Myanmar. I highly recommend him. He showed us a glimpse of Myanmar that we’d never have discovered on our own.

Some of the things we found on our own… giant chinthe, climbable sandstone Buddha,

peace bell, shade from the Independence Monument obelisk,

carnival games, great views of the Shwedagon Pagoda which is made of actual gold,

feel-restaurant

and lots of awesome food!

Dawn continued on to Inle and I took off on the Iron Man bus… ok, not really… I had to return to Chiang Mai. The funny thing about this trip was that I was never more than 25 miles from my pod. We cycled about 45 miles on asphalt and dirt and walked over 10 miles around the city but just didn’t go very far… and yet, felt worlds away.

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