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 DAY 24 & 25 - Inle, Myanmar (Burma)

Previous Blogs: Day 1 Tokyo | Day 2 Tokyo | Day 3 & 4 Singapore | Day 5 Singapore | Day 6 Ho Chi Minh City | Day 7 Ho Chi Minh City & Tunnels

Day 8 Can Tho | Day 9 Floating Market | Day 10 Flower Market | Day 11 Hoi An | Day 12 My Son Temple | Day 13 Hanoi | Day 14-16 Halong Bay

Day 17 Luang Prabang | Day 18 Temples-Waterfalls | Day 19 Mekong River | Day 20-21 Bagan | Day 22 Bagan | Day 23 Inle | Day24-25 Inle

Click photos for a larger image...

There actually is no Day 24 as we just stayed back at the hotel for the day - it was a planned day off and I was still battling with a nasty cold, so we relaxed and watched the boats go by and drank some beer. Day 25 dawned and it was time to see more village people!

Collecting seaweed to use as fertilizer

A tomato farm

First stop was at a village where they make rice crackers - each village specializes in something and then that is all the entire village does. They take their product to the market sell it and buy other produce provided by other villages. In this case this particular village makes the rice crackers and grows tomatoes, that's it. The village makes 600-800 rice crackers a day and that produces an income of about $50 each day for the village.

They showed us how they get rice out of the shells by grinding it with a stick

A villager tending to the tomatoes - which are grown on floating gardens - still blows my mind.

Fisherman paddling...

Here he is fishing... all on one leg!

Then we went up a river, see the people doing their laundry, bathing, and cleaning dishes in the river

We then went to a temple where there are over 1000 Stupas - a stupa is a construction intended to honor someone and their faith - quite often valuables such as jewelry and gold are interned. Unfortunately the tomb raiders over the last few hundred years broke into them and stole an enormous amount of antiquities. They have begun restoring each stupa.  So for $200-300 you can pay for one to be restored and have your name on it forever!

Un-restored stupas, note the trees growing out of them!

Here are some of the restored ones.

The temple itself

Yeah, one of these days that sign is probably gonna have to go away...  Buddhism is a very sexist religion.  But aren't most religions that are created by man??


Wendy & the Guide hiking up the mountain to view more stupas.

Then there was this place- I took one look at that climb and said NO WAY is my bad knee gonna handle that! But the view Wendy saw was amazing!  She said the hike was awesome!

This monk lives all by himself at the top of the mountain.  He gets his food by climbing down the mountain every day with his alms bowl collecting food from the villagers.  Monks are not allowed to cook for themselves.  The guide and Wendy chatted with him for about 30 minutes before heading down the mountain.  Well, Wendy didn't chat (WHAT??!!) because women are not allowed to talk to monks.

And then time for lunch with our guide. This entire meal you see with two giant plates of food, Wendy's strawberry, banana and chocolate crepe and 2 beers came to $7.50 for the 3 of us! I love this country!

Then it was time to head to our car and drive to the airport for our flight back to Yangon with lots to see along the way!

The airport was a HOOT!!!

State-of-the-art technology informing us that our flight was delayed.

The smoking room once you are THROUGH security has a wide open window to OUTSIDE the airport and anyone could climb through or pass a bomb!!!!

And finally...

<<<<< This might seem like a patriotic statement - until you realize that it is actually the logo of Myanmar beer!


We are actually now in Singapore. We flew to Yangon arriving very late due to a flight delay, so our evening tour of the city was canceled because we had an early flight to Singapore. So we really did not see much of Yangon, except through a car window. Pretty ugly really, and terrible traffic. Drive from airport at night to our hotel late Sunday evening was 20 minutes. Drive from hotel to airport at 8 am Monday morning was hour and a half!

There are no scooters in Yangon - the government banned them because there are so many cars already. They added 500,000 cars to the city that did not have the infrastructure for it as the outgoing government wanted to make a last little nest egg for itself in taxes.

Tomorrow first thing we take our 18 hour flight back to the USA (short stop over in Tokyo for an hour and a half).

I will deliver my final summation of the trip from our Jet Lag Therapy hotel room just outside LAX airport when we arrive.