two days in bagan: day two

the second morning in bagan was slightly clearer
and people had managed to get into hot air balloons too
we found a temple where we could climb and watch these balloons
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we then went to the new bagan market near our hotel
these markets are the ultimate destination for fresh produce

but i feel more drawn to the fresh flowers that is available
since everyone probably has an altar or visit the pagodas/ temples,
these fresh flowers are possibly required and add much reverence and beauty

one of the interesting sighting of the day was seeing
a herder trying to get his goats to the other side of the road

for lunch we sat outside one of the temples
in a local food joint and relished the good meal
watching tourists and monks all enjoy the afternoon

and the temple hopping continued…
i like how the Burmese have water vessels
for thirsty travellers outside temple premises

one of the interesting finds was a replica
of the mahabodhi temple from bodhgaya

but we found the only hindu pagoda and
was fortunate to have a guide explain it all

but i enjoyed some shots from inside this temple
more than the history and the stories that she told us

thatbyinnyu phaya is one of the bigger  temples
that we had been riding past here the last few days
but as we walked around this evening it felt so grand and
i was in awe of not just these structures but the people who made it
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for sunset found a nice temple to climb
but others had made similar discovery too

it was the perfect ending to a beautiful day in bagan

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two days in bagan: day one

we had been told of bagan sunrises so we set off early morning
on our bikes except it was drizzling and a sunrise was nowhere in sight

despite an uneventful but beautiful morning
we got back for breakfast and got some journaling done

it was a rainy day but we biked to the mani-situ market
which was full of life and energy as we bargained for souvenirs
bought a pirated George Orwell book enjoyed a scrumptous Burmese lunch

and when you get out of the market and walk around a bit
you see the version of irrawaddy like the calm before the storm

after that we stepped into a trendy “friends cafe” for coffee
and saw a painting of aung san sui ki along with other paintings

a part of me have been wanting to find out how Burmese people
feel about her with recent rohngiya crisis and international criticism
it was nice to see her still revered and find room in a painter’s imagination

the remaining afternoon was spent temple hopping
and these archaeological structures tell so much of the
history, religion and environment of the people of Burma

they have also found humor in attracting tourists
as this particular sign read ‘leaning pagoda of pisa’
to tell of a tilted pagoda that was definitely in need of repair

Irrawady River Cruise

We got on our boat
before the break of dawn
as the orange sunrise welcomed us

across -the sun kissed pagodas
shone in its glory and glistened

we soon crossed the irrawaddy bridge
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our next stop was at the pottery village of yandabo
the place where the first Anglo-Burmese treaty was signed

the village had some cool children
who lived life in their own terms felt like

we went back on our boat
supported by this thin plank…

the better part of the afternoon
went on watching the other boats
and the coals they were transporting

the final hour on the cruise was breathtaking
as little white clouds exploded in the crisp blue sky.