I had no plans to visit Myanmar, but fortunately I soon realized that travel plans are not very interesting, and that the beautiful thing is often to do the opposite. So I had planned to go east but then ended up going west, to ancient Burma. This is without doubt the Southeast Asian country that I loved the most. I entered the country on a one-way road – it is open one day in each direction – and I stayed for a few days in a small village, then some more days in another small village before taking a 27-hour train journey to Kalaw. On that trip I was adopted by a family of Muslims and then by a lady who knew a bit of English. At night I slept on wooden benches and when I woke up I had her blanket on me – she had slept with nothing covering her.
In Kalaw I spend a few days at the home of a family in which the brother and sister do not speak with each other: the sister married a man of a lower caste and was rejected by the brother. But both organize walks, and that was the reason for me coming to Kalaw. It took me and the other foreigners accompanying me 3 days to walk the dirt roads that took us to Lake Inle, through small villages and fields full of crops, sometimes accompanied by children bringing back cattle from their pastures, and sometimes by curious villagers like this man, who I talked to, for long minutes, without a single word being said.
I want to go back to Myanmar. Yes I do!
This as all the other articles on this site are translated by my good friend Devo Forbes!!