“We are a landscape of all we have seen.” – Isamu Naguchi
Back in Yangon after three beautiful days in Bagan. Our days in Bagan were unbelievably good, peaceful, and happy.
I’ve smiled and laughed more than I have in ages this past week and I don’t want to go.
It feels good to be back in the beautiful city I’ve called home for the past month, but also somewhat sad to realize this is the last day I’ll have in the country (for a while). I don’t know when life will take me here again, but I’m hoping it will be someday soon.
Tomorrow, early a.m. I’ll be on my way to back to Thailand.
Burma thank you for being wonderful, challenging, and rewarding! Thank you for all the smiles, the generosity, and for sharing yourself with me. Beauty is everywhere here and I feel incredibly blessed to have had the chance to live, work, and play here for the past month.
“Any life, no matter how long and complex it may be, is made up of a single moment — the moment in which a man finds out, once and for all, who he is.” – Jorge Luis Borges
The glamorous Buddha
This is the Chauk Htat Gyi pagoda, or reclining Buddha of Burma.
I like to think of it as the glamorous Buddha.
This lovely statue has pink nails, pretty blue eye shadow (or as the two Thai women I met there said, it is a “pretty-eyed Buddha”), and is clothed in glittery gold robe.
The afternoon I went to Chauk Htat Gyi, I didn’t really mean to end up there, but I did. And, as it turns out, the moment I arrived, the rains started and didn’t stop for the next several hours. Camera and I waited out the rains and I can certainly think of worse places to spend a few hours. By the end of my time, I still couldn’t come to terms with how grand, beautiful, and overall, quiet this place is.
More of that gold and blue
At night, two colors pervade this city – gold and blue.
These days have been wet, very wet and filled with walking long distances (just to save $2 and see more of the city), funny conversations with strangers, and my attempt to explore food (all food here). Walking around with a heavy camera is nothing new for me, but I find that I often want to ditch it and everything I have and dance in the rain. Something about the place makes me want to abandon everything and spend my days wandering like a monk.
So far, and as I’ve been told numerous times, internet is slow (very slow) and hard to come by and the food is oily. Other than that (and maybe the constant wet and the early mildew of all my possessions), I have absolutely no complaints. I find that I am perfectly content and enjoying my solitude. I’m staying at a tiny budget inn not too far from the water and I feel that these days have been important for me.
I find that when I travel I often opt for the “slow and sweaty” route and in doing this, I challenge myself to be patient. In Yangon, I also have been practicing patience and practicing the art of living quietly and living alone. While I’ve had great encounters with strangers so far, I feel that this is only the start of nearly a month of living here. I’m enjoying both the conversations and the times of silence.
For now, I am (patiently) waiting to check my email and doing yoga in my tiny, concrete room. I’ve got rain-soaked and mango-covered leggings on now and I’ve only been in the city for a few days and I already smell like it (and I don’t mind it one bit).
Back to Varanasi
Today, I’m back to Varanasi in my thoughts.
Varanasi nights are unlike any other nights in the world. They’re full of thick colors, activity, smoke, and noise.
These nights were good nights. Nights full of adventures and story telling and meeting new friends along the way.
Feeling a lot right now.
My heart is in Boston. My heart is back in India and Nepal. And my heart is very, very much here.
The semester is quickly coming to an end and it feels as if everything around me is moving faster than ever.
[Photos: Golden Varanasi nights//Grace Farson]