Erica, you're a tiger you're stronger than I am

Trip Start Feb 26, 2010
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Trip End Feb 26, 2011


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Where I stayed
We actually stayed back at the golden lilly

Flag of Myanmar  ,
Saturday, July 17, 2010

We woke at 5am to the chanting of the monks doing their morning prayers. It was still dark but the rain had stopped. The prayers continued until 6am by which time Erica and I had already inspected our blistered feet and been for a walk. I had a shower operated by a hand pump in cold water outside being watched by the young monks who had never appreciated a clinically obese physique before. We set off walking at about 7:30am and the scenery just continued to change completely every hour or so. Erica was leaving me and the rest of the group for dead amusingly (p.s. I needed to call a blog you're a tiger you're stronger than I am so this fits the bill, oh my blisters slowed me down....).  We were soon longing for the end and counting down the hours and minutes but we got in to our stride as the route gradually sloped downhill and eventually we made the edge of Lake Inle where we stopped for something to eat then had a one hour boat trip around the lake. The fishermen here used both hands working with their nets whilst they held an oar and paddled with one leg while standing on the other, very odd but very expertly done.   We also saw them adopting the ‘beating’ technique to direct the fish in to their nets.  The lake was very picturesque and we took some stunning pictures. There are so many villages on the lake but it is so vast that the natural beauty of the place remains. A great end to a great two days with great people.
While the rest of the group had a deserved rest checking into a guest house we had to walk into town, change some money then get a tuktuk out to the bus station. This sounded easier than it was. For some reason tourists were not allowed near the bus station on this day and it took ages for our guide to negotiate with the drivers as they would risk a $50 dollar fine if they got caught. They charged us 1.50 each 3 times the normal price to take the risk of getting caught or bribing the traffic cops. The driver of the trike was a complete nut job nearly killing us about four times trying to undertake lorries on the grass at the side of the road (yes this is a motorbike with a carriage stuck to the back of it). When we approached the guard the traffic cop blew his whistle but this guy just floored it straight through the checkpoint and took us down an alley and booted us all off disappearing quickly.
The locals bus was pretty cool, again far more ox and cart and horse carts than cars or motorbikes, it becomes normal but you have to keep pinching yourself. The bus ride was a couple of hours and we could hardly move by the time the bus got back to Kalaw. Eventually we got back to the guest house in Kalaw.  We grabbed a quick bite to eat at the Nepali restaurant in town with a few well deserved beers and were asleep almost straight afterwards.
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