1. Travel

Burma (Day 5)

We survived the night without any mosquito bites!!! Thank goodness for those mosquito nets. Buuuttttt… we woke up this morning to no electricity. Imagine 10 people trying to shower and get ready for the day in the dark. Thank goodness for phone flashlights, seriously.

Anyway, after a bit of a rough start to the morning, we headed out for an early breakfast of နန်းကြီးသုပ်‌ (nan gyi thoke – chicken and noodles). Aww yisssss! Two plates just for me 🙂 and for everyone else. One thing about life in Burma – breakfast is the biggest meal of the day, so 2 plates per person of this amazing stuff was enough to set everyone into good spirits.

နန်းကြီးသုပ်‌ (chicken curry noodles) - COME TO MAMA
နန်းကြီးသုပ်‌ (chicken curry noodles) – COME TO MAMA
Ate two plates of this for breakfast so I don't feel bad about taking two pics of this
Ate two plates of this for breakfast so I don’t feel bad about taking two pics of this
Just kidding... we all had two plates
Just kidding… we all had two plates

We drove to a small pagoda called Maha Ant Htoo Kan Thar (English spelling…?) in Maymyo in the mid-morning. Maymyo (now renamed to Pyin Oo Lwin) is a nice little town, and people love it because of the nice weather: it’s been about 70 degrees and not humid at all. Almost like California!

Maha Ant Htoo Kan Thar Pagoda
Maha Ant Htoo Kan Thar Pagoda
Entrance of the pagoda
Entrance of the pagoda
These dudes are in front of most pagodas. They're called ခြင်္သေ့ (chinthe, pronounced chin-thay) and they're Burmese guardian lions.
These dudes are in front of most pagodas. They’re called ခြင်္သေ့ (chinthe, pronounced chin-thay) and they’re Burmese guardian lions.

Next was Peik Chin Myaung, a set of caves in which there are hundreds and hundreds of Buddha statues. I can see why people come here – the Buddhas inside the caves are amazing – but I don’t do well with damp floors, wet footprints, and general cave moistness, so not exactly my cup of tea. Also, I wore a ထဘီ today and am regretting it now… not sure how all the Burmese women wear these skirts everywhere.

Entrance to the caves
Entrance to the caves
Some of thousands of Buddha statues inside
Some of thousands of Buddha statues inside
One of thousands of Buddha statues inside
One of thousands of Buddha statues inside
So many people... so many wet footprints...
So many people… so many wet footprints…

Then came the BE Fall, which is a little waterfall under a pagoda. The falls used to be bigger, but still. It still amazes me that people build pagodas literally everywhere here – giant rocks that defy gravity, waterfalls, you name it.

wao pagoda on a waterfall
wao pagoda on a waterfall
wao pagoda on a waterfall
Ok these falls are actually kind of small. But there’s still a pagoda built on top of them!

We had lunch at a place called Golden Gate Restaurant. The food here was amaze (no photos because we were too busy enjoying the food!) and we picked up a hint of free wifi at the restaurant – the first internet we’ve had in three days. Not enough wifi to check social media or send emails though.

After lunch we stopped at the National Kandawgyi Botanical Garden in Pyin Oo Lwin. Lots of cool flora here.

National Kandawgyi Botanical Gardens. Beautiful place. Would've been more beautiful if the sun was out.
National Kandawgyi Botanical Gardens. Beautiful place. Would’ve been more beautiful if the sun was out.
Flower garden #2 of many. PS peep the little pagoda across the water! Pagodas everywhere!!!
Flower garden #2 of many. PS peep the little pagoda across the water! Pagodas everywhere!!!
I want these for my garden. They're all over Burma!
I want these for my garden. They’re all over Burma!
I call this... the white lettuce flower
I call this… the white lettuce flower
And I call this... the red cabbage flower
And I call this… the red cabbage flower
My mom's relative, Auntie Wa Wa, joined us today. She is the sweetest! Also peep this ထဘီ... having to hold up this skirt all day while walking through a cave and a botanical garden is smh.
My mom’s relative, Auntie Wa Wa, joined us today. She is the sweetest! Also peep this ထဘီ… having to hold up this skirt all day while walking through a cave and a botanical garden is smh.
Black swan: my 3rd favorite bird
Black swan: my 3rd favorite bird

Dinner was at a restaurant called Cafe House back in Mandalay. Also a good meal. One odd thing I’ve noticed about eating out in Burma: if you want to get the waiter’s attention, you raise your hand and make kissy noises. 100% serious about this. Imagine trying to make kissy noises at your waiter or waitress in America. Ha ha harassment. I think we’re trying to find some alcohol since it’s New Year’s Eve, but we’re all turning in early – tomorrow’s a big day that starts with a 4:30 AM wake up call.

Happy (almost) new year from our mosquito net!!!!!

Can't leave this net or else 5 mosquitoes will come in
Can’t leave this net or else 5 mosquitoes will come in
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