Sunday, March 18

Myanmar - Mandalay

About 1,5 hour flight north from Yangon we had our other launch symposium. Only spent a day here but was lucky to be able to see some of the local sights and history. Amazing city it was! Warmly recommend to spend 1-2 days here.

First place of interest was U Bein's Bridge a bit outside the city in prefecture called Amarapura. One of the most amazing sunset I've seen 
A loooong wooden bridge stretching over the swamp 

Lady selling sparrows, free a bird and get good luck because you did a good deed. I did, twice! 

Beer seldom taste this good
Get your lucky ticket from this guy 
Or maybe some intestines from this guy? 
Night walk around Mahamuni Temple. Gold is the color in Myanmar! 
No ladies here...
Following morning we visited Kuthodaw Pagoda. There are 728 identical white small pagodas build around it 

First I thought this cat had caught a rat. Looking closer I noticed it was a tiny tiny kitten the mommy was washing. Soooo small still 

Mandalay Hills about 30 minutes drive from Downtown. Amazing view over the whole city from here. A bit haze though 
Coming up to Mandalay Hills by escalators, this was the first time I rode an escalator bare feet 
Temple up in the hills 
Mandalay Hills and Palace from one of the Hilton rooms with a balcony 
Palace walls, huge area! 
Launch symposium in Mandalay for our products 
And a victory beer after all work  

Friday, March 16

Myanmar - Land of Gold

My 50th country! I hadn't really been counting to how many places I've been to before. Downloaded an app called BEEN, you easily click and add places you been to. The app tells you how many countries and how many % of the world you have seen. Also works offline. Now I've been to 20% of the world!

Good night Yangon! Sun sure is red here 
 First night I stayed a bit more north of the city. Got a high floor overlooking the Inya lake 
 The 50th country
 Woke up very early because the time difference to Tokyo is 2,5 hours. 6 am sunrise was gorgeous, worth to wake up a bit earlier.
 Rough around the edges and a true rustic touch to it! Just how I like it. Feels very cozy somehow 
 Just the kind of brand I want to have when I turn 70 
 Shwe Pagoda top of the city. Picture does not do it right, it's huge!! 
Entrance to the Pagoda 
Pagoda from a closer look, that is a LOT of gold 
 The cryptic alphabet they have 
 Found the tree of life behind one of the Pagodas 
Sule Pagoda is in the center and lighting up the night like a christmas tree 
 Sule by day 
 Independence monument from the British in 1948
 During the night there are a lot of people playing football in the streets. There are also a lot of rats running around....
Lunch at Novotel was probably one of the top 5 buffets I had. Luckily it was my birthday so a lot of cheat-eating could be done. Cheers, now 34 
 Our product launch, here we come Yangon

Took a boat over to the other side of the river called Dalla. It's just a 10-15 minute ride. Was a lot more messier on the other side.
This little girl kept following, gave me some cookies to throw to the birds from the boat 
 Dalla sunset. Rented a bike and a guy who took me around 
Dalla shore
Football here also. Wonder when the Myanmar team will play in tournaments. Moe Kaung Pagoda 
Shwe Sayan Pagoda 
The old British customs house 
 Birthday dinner in Strang Hotel, a nice gem. Old colonial hotel, not very big but a must try dinner. Super affordable also. Just 5-8 euro per dish. 
Travellers bar 

Would love to have a sip of this historical 1901 whiskey 
Pool by night was looking nice 
When I went to bed on my birthday the charger was just at 84. What's the odds, same as my birth-year on this day! 
 A whole days training with our new partner, local lunch was nice! 

 Good night Yangon, looks like we will be sitting in traffic quite a bit tonight....
 Some more city exploring before leaving the city. It's a very small and compact place, you can walk to most places

Makes you sad to see this amount of trash in the river 
 100 meter up in the air! 
Long way down...

Welcome to Yangon 
 Now this was a cool crossing view! 
 Floating palace restaurant 
 Pigeon attack
 Zoological Gardens, love the umbrella colors 
 Old British court house 
 One of the most amazing train stations I've seen 

Rooftop bar next to the Shangri-la hotel called Yangon Yangon. Great view!! 
Cheers Yangon, amazing city. Time to head back to Tokyo now