Thursday, September 2, 2010

Highlights of Burma 2007

My husband and I took a pre-wedding trip to SE Asia and managed to fit in a side trip to Burma (Myanmar) for a week. 
This is Bagan where over 1000 of these stupas or chedis  stud the landscape stunningly like mushrooms as far as you can see.

The displays in the market are a work of art. These leaves are used for bundles of betelnut that is chewed by a large segment of the population. 

The golden glow of the Buddha's hand.

I was stopped on my bicycle by a man that wanted to invite me to his home. He was a kindergarten teacher and was hoping that I would make a donation to the students as even early education is something that families have to pay for themselves and many are too poor  to send their children to school. He showed me picture of the students receiving their donations.
He was very proud to show me his family pictures of his graduate sisters.
I was fascinated by every aspect of his simple home.

Boat trip on the Irrawaddy headed to Mandalay.
Amazingly we had this tour boat almost to ourselves with just one Burmese couple and  a Japanese man.
There was more crew than passengers.
The ubiquitous "Hotel California" was playing.
I think I have heard that song in every country I have ever visited.
I have a little story about my fortune being told on this trip. Stay tuned as I may share it on my new writing blog that I started up this week.

Coming into Mandalay

Always friendly children

Another Pagoda, they are everywhere you look.

The jade market in Mandalay. We seemed to be the only foreigners there and caused quite a commotion being swarmed by vendors.
They also seemed to be doing a lot of trading among themselves.

I was more interested in beads however, which were much harder to locate.

Not the best photo but it captures the atmosphere of dusk in the city.
As my pedicab driver said to my husband to be "Grandfather, I think grandsister is very tired!"

I don't know if I can convey how exotic and otherworldly this felt to me

Interior of a pagoda. The buddha images have a different stylization than the ones of Thailand that I've become so familiar with.

A young water buffalo wrangler at Inle Lake. I felt so fortunate to get this shot.

 A monastery on an island at Inle Lake.
These brooms against the teakwood made such a nice pattern with the softness against the hardwood.

Market day at Inle Lake ~ the parking area

Rice cakes on spindles


  1. Wow what a great tour. So exotic indeed. That water buffalo shot is spectacular...oh tired Yes let's swap - I have something in mind for you that I wanted to do anyhow....xox Corrine

  2. ooh thank you for this tired Grandsister ! My brother lives in Thailand - will visit one day

  3. I thoroughly enjoyed the tour. Love the stupas!

  4. Awesome! Looks like you had an amazing time. I especially liked the pictures of the jade market! I would LOVE to visit someplace like that :) I'm so glad you posted these pics. I really enjoyed reading this!

  5. Your pictures are lovely and it sounds like you have a great trip. I hope you were generous to the people you met, every tourist tip means a lot. By chance I read an article last night from a nearly reporter who was in the restricted areas nearly 10 years ago -- quite a different Myanmar, painfully different. You don't even want to know.


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