Friday, July 27, 2012

Burma (Myanmar)

Got a chance to stop in Tachileik, Burma (Myanmar) for the day. Here’s some of what we saw…

We went into town across the Thai-Burma friendship bridge. We were somewhat surprised when entering Burma they didn’t just stamp our passports, they took them and threw ‘em in a pile. They told us not to worry; just use the paper ID tags they gave us and we’ll get our passports back when we leave Burma. Sounded dangerous but hopefully they’ll be there when we leave.

Burma is part of the Golden Triangle, or Sop Ruak.
According to the CIA Factbook, It’s the “world’s second largest producer of opium”  behind only  Afghanistan. 

Stopped by the Wat Phra Yok for a little serenity. The monks had a Burmese style white jade buddha which was quite serene in its own right.

We hiked up the tallest hill in the village to visit the Shwedagon Pagoda, a golden pagoda that was built to replicate the Shwedagon Pagoda in Rangoon, the former capital of Burma, The Rangoon Shwedagon Pagoda is considered the most sacred in Burma. Good views of the village from the hill top.

Back in town, there were people from the hill tribes everywhere, each one distinctive in their tribal clothing; we went on to the village of Tai Yai, home of the Shan hill people who plied us with cobra whiskey. Cobra whiskey seems extra strong, with that cobra just sitting there on the bottom of the bottle staring at you after each sip.

The day ended, and when we stopped for our passports, sure enough, there they were in the same pile as we left them. We picked them up and headed for Chiang Rai. Good time in Burma. I mean Myanmar.

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