Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Welcome to Yangon, Myanmar.

touched down in Burma at 7:30am and felt awful, so had to sit on the floor for a while till the dizziness past me and I no longer wanted to faint. I slept for a bit of the taxi journey to my hostel too because it was painful being awake. 

From first impressions I really like Burma. It's just so relaxed and calm. I stupidly asked if they ever got traffic here, and sure enough, 5 minutes later I had jinxed the situation and we were stuck in traffic forever. 

When I finally got to my hostel and checked in, I decided to lay down and mope around for a while trying to recover. Upon deciding to explore, I attempted to walk out of the hostel failing to see the sliding glass door in front of me and so smacked straight into it, banging my head and adding to the already terrible headache I had! Nightmare. I just laughed it off and was super embarrassed. 

I headed to the shops to pick up some cookies as there was nothing western around to eat. The hotel dude laughed at me when I asked if any places around here sold pizza... Whoops. But I did meet a western guy who had been living in Yangon later on who told me where I could get some in the future. Priorities sorted! Unfortunately I couldn't actually buy the cookies as this shop wouldn't accept US dollars and I didn't have my card to withdraw local currency.

Instead, I wandered round downtown. Surprisingly, Burma is the country I feel the safest in. I never felt like I had to keep my bag close, or worry about people attacking me... Everyone is super friendly and helpful. They're the opposite of intimidating. Its a shame though because it's definitely the most run down country. All of the buildings lack windows and have moss growing over them. None of them are well take care off.

So many of the men out here wear skirts, they're known as longyis and resemble sarongs. Everyone wears them, even business men and young students. I guess they're just comfortable in the heat. I bet guys back home wish they were acceptable to wear! 

Also, the women, and babies, cover their faces in this yellow powder called thanaka. According to Wikipedia, 'Apart from cosmetic beauty, thanaka also gives a cooling sensation and provides protection from sunburn. It is believed to help remove acne and promote smooth skin. It is also an anti-fungal.' It's bizarre but they all seem to love it!

Anyway, after I picked up my card I then went with a French guy out to explore some more. We went to a pagoda but it was a disappointment. The classic Thai problem where all there is inside is a load of Buddha and little else. We didn't spent long there before heading down to the waterfront... Which again, wasn't anything special! 

I just love the culture here. The people are so interesting so observe. 

I spent the evening in my hostel and just caught up on sleep. Practically the whole city closes at 9pm, you can't get anything after then a part from a few bars that are open. 

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