Myanmar #3

After we left Yangon (Rangoon), we flew to an area called Bagan. We had to fly everywhere because there are no highways, just one-and-a-half lane dirt roads and no facilities. Myanmar has little to no infrastructure. Now that they have begun to import cars, they will have to build some roads, but they have no earth-moving equipment, only hand tools like picks and shovels and wheelbarrows.


Bagan has a thousand or maybe two thousand ancient temples. But I didn’t see them because I fell sick about an hour after checking in to the hotel. One by one, we all got violently ill. We had a gastroenterologist and an internist traveling with us, and their consensus was Norovirus. It was awful. Guides were sick also. I managed to climb this tower and snap off a photo of the landscape before I hurled and dragged my sorry ass to bed. IMG_0245b

Some days later—I lost track of time—we were taken to a market. Only the die-hard photo hounds went. But the smells were ghastly and sent us all running back to the bus before our time was up.IMG_0251


High-occupancy vehicles.IMG_0340


You are supposed to rub these statues where you have pain or ills and you will be healed. This woman made sure her baby rubbed every statue (ick). The stuff on their faces is Thanaka, a cosmetic paste made from bark.IMG_0364

This woman was selling something akin to Crepes Suzette by the side of the road. They looked good, but we didn’t dare. We only ate steamed rice if we ate anything at all.IMG_0399

Taxi anyone?IMG_0405


  1. What a wonderful travelog....the pictures and the descriptions take me along. I would love to visit these areas but I think that for now, I will be an armchair traveler and let you do the heavy work. How fortunate that you picked a trip with Drs. on board....and how awful that you needed their opinion.
    Can't wait for the next chapter.

  2. What a wonderful trip but I'm sorry to hear you got sick. Glad there were some professionals available to diagnose your illness. It just blows my mind that people go hungry with all that gold surrounding them in the name of religion.

  3. Reminds me of my stay in Indonesia. The market smells can be overwhelming.

    It's scary to get sick in a foreign country, as you know all too well. Glad you had some Drs with you this time.

  4. The photo of the mother and child touching the statue was a Nat'l Geo photo. Q: The taxi photo is good--are they the Brahama (sp) bulls? Do they eat meat--like beef?
    xoxo, Mike

  5. I just caught up with your great travelogue Rian. As usual your photos are breathtaking. I hope you're on the mend from the gastro illness. That's never a fun travel experience.


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