Egil’s Travel Log

Travelling Asia, one country at a time

PhotoStory 0004: Shy boy in the hills over Inle Lake, Myanmar (Burma)

Meeting a shy boy in the hills over Inle Lake, Myanmar (Burma)
Photo taken 2006-12-04, (dec 4th) at the hills over Inle Lake , Shan State, Myanmar (Burma)

The day after we had an All-Day-Trip on the Inle Lake, me and the autralian traveller I met two days before, decided to do some more sightseeing in the aria, as we both planned to leave the next morning on a long bumpy busride to Yagoon. So we decided, after a whole day mostly sitting in a boat, and with the next day expecting 20++ hours on a bumpy bus, - to get some excercise and take a good walk in the nearby hills, and see some local villages. After all, the town at Inle Lake was a little more touristy than we prefeered, and we hoped to see some more of the "real life of people in Myanmar"

So we made a deal with the recommended guide at the hotel, and paid 7 usd each for the services of a half day foot guiding(, whith we thought was a little expencive compared to the total 10 usd for boat, boatdriver/guide and gasolin a whole day, the day before). We also after some consideration payed him anouther couple of dollars for a "traditional" meal made by his wife after the walk.

But back to the moment on the photo, after many stops, meeting lots of people on our way, and many more and some less interesting things along the way suddenly this young boy appear on our path, walking towards us untill he saw us. Then he stopped, and take a stand just outside the path, looking toward us shyly, not really daring to look directly at us. We stopped of course, watching him back and smiling to this cute shy boy, poorly dressed in just a t-shirt and a traditional longy, just as most kids in this aria (and I guess most of Myanmar) were. The longy is a traditional garmet used instead of by both male and females in Myanmar, - basicly a very simple sarong.

To make sure he gave himself a reason to stand there watching us strangers, he keep open up and fixing his longy, like if he could not get it to fasten properly, repeatedly looking up toward us in a shy but courious way. :-) After a little our guide asked him his name, and if he did not go to the school this day. The shy boy barely answered, but told our guide that he had to work for his family this year, but he hoped to go to school next year. Our guide gave the boy a little bit of candy he brought along, and thanked him for answering, and we all wished him good luck, and we all went on our way...




ps please comment the photo if you like, and grade it from 0 to 10(best) after your liking

egil viking . . . www.meihack.org
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PhotoStory 0002: Buddha in Ananda Temple in Bagan (Myanmar/Burma)

Buddha in Ananda Temple in Bagan (Myanmar/Burma)

Photo taken 2006-12-01, (dec 1st) at Ananda Temple in Bagan, ??? State, Myanmar (Burma)

Bagan is a historic town in Myanmar (Burma) witch is famous for a overwhelming number of temples, stupas and other religious buildings from the past. Most are buddist of course, as Myanmar is a country very dominated by buddist religion. I think there was only one hindu temple among the others. Ananda Temple is one of the most impressive of the many thousands of structures… The guides told me there was over 4400 stuctures in/around Bagan, without me counting/controlling those figures…

The photo is of one of 4 golden, standing buddhas in Ananda Temple, probably the eastern buddha of the four. I took the photo without flash and keept it still by holding it still on the floor, - trying to get both the buddha and the 2 women praying & putting sacrifice in front of it…

It was very peaceful in the temples, and my guide drove me around between the sites in a horsewagon,- whitch was the normal type of taxi/transportation in Bagan.

Other links to Bagan: Temples of Baga Map/temples of Bagan

Other links of Ananda Temple: Photoes of Ananda Temple

ps please comment the photo if you like, and grad it from 0 to 10(best) after your liking

egil viking

www.meihack.org
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PhotoStory 0001: Young (leg-rowing) fisherman at the Inle Lake

Young (leg-rowing) fisherman at the Inle Lake

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Photo taken 2006-12-03, (dec 3rd) at the , Shan State, Myanmar (Burma)

On this day I and a fellow Australian traveller was on a boat-tour on in the Shan State in Myanmar. We paid 10 usd for a whole day of boating and sightseeing on and around the lake, - from morning till after sundown. This photo I took on the start of our way back over the lake, and I got this shot of very young leg-rowing fisherman doing his laft fishing for the day…. The Full-Moon is already up behind the young fisherman, and will within an hour be the only light for the boy in the boat. are especially famous for this special leg-rowing technique the fisherman use from their small boats - trying to get both their arms avalable for handeling the fishernets, or fisherbaskets…

The fishermen are general well aware of their attaction for the tourists, and often start padling with their legs then they see tourists are closing in on them, without demanding any money for their “modelling”.

has lots of interesting spots for tourists/travellers, and are highly recommended. Also is the nature at, and around this lake beautiful.

ps please comment the photo if you like, and grad it from 0 to 10(best) after your likings

egil viking

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On the Road in Marvelously Friendly Myanmar

On the Road in Marvelously Friendly Myanmar


Well, form Thailand it was time to travel to Myanmar (Burma), ans I was actually a bit nervous about going in here, as I had the impression it could be difficult to travel around. Also I heard the people here was really friendly, - but anyway, I felt a little unsafe before going into Myanmar. (also because I had iniatially plans to travel inlands Myanmar from the Thai border to Mandalay, and then down to Yangon (Rangoon) before flying out to KL(Malaysia), - but have to fly direct to Yangon, since inland travels was not allowed anymore..!!!)
And furthermore, I could not not have the safety of having mobile/sms to the outside world, - as this was not possible in Myanmar...

So.... I entered Myanmar by flying in to Yangon from Bangkok (had to fly from Chang Mai to Bangkok first), with a nervous smile, and did not really have any big idea of where or when to go in Myanmar from Yangon.

At the airport in Bangkok I startet talking to a girl from Japan going to Yangon too, and I quickly adopted the first part of her plans as my new backup-plan. (since my original plans had been aborted..) there is one thing I learned on this travel... a bad plan is better than no plan... no plans only leaves you doing,... well nothing (just as planed))

Well landed in Yangon, I got hang on another guy to a hotel mentioned in the Lonely Planet guide.. so I got free transport to this hotel, as I from experience know the drivers always overcharge the newly arrived from the airport... (happened in basicly all contries I'd been to...).

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Well - my first impression of Yangon was that the people here really tried to help you, and I felt a little surpriced by this overwhelming helpfulness, as this usually by experience is followed by open hands wanting tips for doing any small things I normally do myself with no trouble.... but many here actualy just helped to be helpful, and as part of the service... not to get tips.... no need to explain why I really started to like this place... Also my 10 usd hotelroom was the nicest I've seen since my delux singleroom in Cambodia (then I took over a vacaint place in a packagetour arranged by www.bikeforpeace.no) . the room was Huge!!, and had two big doublebeds, and a bathroom just as big as many hotelrooms I've stayed in before., and 6 towels ready for use :D Surpricing luxary :)


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First I took a trip to the marked, and walked around here, trying to take in all the new impressions. Surpricingly do almost all the men in Myanmar use a leg-garment the call "Longy" - basicly a sarong for men... I heard about this from before, but still was surpriced about the number of men using this.I guess the feeling of needing a pair of pants is just a fix idea the rest of the world has got...

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And the girls almost all use a form of clay facemask, to protect their face against the sun, - and keep this mask on all day long... This seams really strange to me, but after some days I got so used to see it I did not notice it anymore...

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Since travelling in this country can be a bit timeconsouming I decided to take first bus north from Yangon to Bagan ( and espesially the last half of the road was on really bad and bumpy roads), and I did a whole day here looking at some of the 4000 temples. ... Its impressingly many temples here, but most of them are quite small, and not so impressive in them selves, but its the share number of temples thats impressive... One day was enougth here... Remarkeble about Bagan is also the big number of horsestaxies here, - many, many hundreds of them...

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Next day again it was time for anouther long busride on bumpy mountainroads, - beeing shaken in all directions..., this time to Inle Lake, and on a local small bus.... let me also mention the roads in Myanmar.... they are NOT of the best standard in Asia.... !

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At Inle Lake I got ne anouther nice room, for 6 usd a night this time,. good value, even I had to wait for 20 minutes for the water to get warm...

The first day in Inle Lake I and a other from Australia took a boatride across and around the lake of Inle Lake ( Inle Lake is both name of the lake, and the town). And this was truley a very good daytrip... Inle Lake are espesially known for the fishermens special foot-rowing techique, and its part impressive, and partly funny to watch... :) Also thay have a floating market every 5 days, but not this day... so we visited a regular Inle Lake market instead. (and I got me some Longys and some xmas presents here) Also we visit some Lotus-treadweavers, a fishfarm, a silversmith (more xmaspresents), a longneckexhibithion and weavers, a temple, a monastary and many more interesting places., - and on the way back - more fishermen and a sunset from the boat... Very nice.

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Internet is a different store, gmail, yahoo, hotmail and other western (american?) popular sites are beeing blocked from use in Myanmar, and the internet lines are, if exicting..., call-uplines of not very good quality... and mobiles, well not possible....

Next day we took a little hike with a guide in the mountains around Inle Lake, It was nice to get around by foot again (as compared to be bumping upanddown and sideways on the bus), and walk through villages, temples, caves and nice landscape. The most memorable on the trip was the people living here, and espesially the young girls , already beeing mothers and married at age of 14... As always in Myanmar, - people were extremely friendly and smiles were plenty. It was a very nice trip, but I wished it was longer... :)

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The next day we had to take a long, slow, humpy 21,5 hour bus back to Yangon. This was a new record for me in long (bumpy) busride... - and normally the driver would drive 4-4,5 hours before stopping for wc and food/supplies... Did I mention the roads in Myanmar... ? They are really not very good.... ;)

Well back and still shaken, but not stired, we had a day in front of us, whitch I used for hunting down any possibility for getting from Yangon to KL (Malaysia) , since there was no possibility to order by net (since the net refused me to stay logged in to Air Asias webpages... and some hours later, and quite a bit us dollar in commision I had a ticket to KL via Bangkok the next morning... so my last day I could have used for sightseeing, but used for tickethunting instrad...

All in all Myanmar has to be one of my top favourite destinations, - Im really happy I took the chance to visit this country, in which has people with wonderful big smiles, and really helpful and serviceminded attitude. Myanmar also has very good hotelstandard compared to what you should expect compared to the rest of the standard of infrastructur ( did I mention the roads? ) Also many things in Myanmar are not the same, same as other countries, whitch gives it a spesial touch.

Food are cheap and good, hotels are a bit more expencive, but really good, Postcard ar cheap, and stamps are rediculusly cheap, girls are cute, but relationships are not possible, - the internet are expencive, SLOW, and restricted, and may be on line, if lucky... Mobile cant connect and money comes in small bills, and big stables, or in USD... And I have to at least once mention the roads... which are not to good....

Myanmar is highly recommendable
(but the roads are not..)
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Pictures from Myanmar!

Pictures from Myanmar!

Egil just sent me a large batch of
, which are now out for your enjoyment :-) Egil has taken many beautiful pictures during his Asia travel, but this time he has, in my opinion, really overdone himself -- there are
lots
of great pictures, just see for yourselves!

He is now busy writing his blog post, which will be published in a few days.

Regards,
Roar
Webmaster
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