Donald the Dumb doesn’t like Africa or Haiti. He’d not like what used to be Burma, which now is called Myanmar. The people in Burma don’t look like Norwegians with blonde hair, blue eyes, and light skin. Aside from the village idiot not liking Burma, I do. Of all the places that I have been outside of America, that country is my favorite.
There is a long list of reasons for my admiration of the people and their country. They enjoy outsiders and will go out of their way to assist travelers. That is no exaggeration. Stop anyone on the street and ask directions, and they will gladly show you how to get where you want to go. Often, they will want to talk to you and ask where you are from.
Another issue to the credit of the people in Myanmar is that a large majority live below the poverty level. Nevertheless, they are happy to meet tourists without any sense of envy or negativity related to differences in income. That is probably the most unique aspect of the people, beyond their willingness to assist you, which a part of the different income levels.
I would be willing to bet that they would even help Donald Dumb without showing any displeasure with his wealth or his attitude. They understand their economic situation and willingly work to improve it for themselves and for the next generation. It is absolutely an amazing attitude that they possess.
Another issue is their food, especially when it comes to eating in restaurants or from street vendors. In the past decade, I have spent a month in Indochina. During that time period, I went to three different hospitals’ emergency rooms due to food poisoning. I have the knack to get food poisoning when others with me don’t get sick eating in the same restaurant but different foods from the menu.
I have spent about twice that amount of time in Myanmar and have never had a trace of food poison or related problems. Never. There is a quasi-joke about describing food poisoning. It feels like you’re going to die and in the next moment afraid you won’t. Remarkably, Myanmar is an emerging country, but, on both trips, I never had any problem related to food. Additionally, I love the food, even though I couldn’t name any meal that I ate in the two months that I was there.
Having sung the praises about the people and the country of Burma, all wasn’t well. The problem that rattled me were the hotel rooms. They were clean, up-to-date, and spacious.
That being said, I have spent time in a large number of different hotels. However, my complaint consists of two issues: the electrical switches and the shower controls.
All the hotels had two or more rows of light switches in panels containing a half dozen or more light switches. I spent a great deal of time trying to determine which switch controlled which lights. I know about how to deal with 220 vs 110 voltage for my camera and laptop, but I was always spending time flipping switches in often vain attempts to determine which switch was connected to what light. Even more maddening is that in one of the panels it had a switch that would turn out all the lights in the room.
The second item was the differing types of shower controls. I honestly don’t think that in two months of being in at least a dozen hotels that I ever found two hotels with the same shower controls. Therefore, while I fumbled through more than a dozen light switches, I did the same when it came to showers. Excluding those two problems, I love Myanmar.
However, the thing that I love the most about Burma is my family who live there. I will return to visit them for the third time in several years. Interestingly, today, February 28 is Moh Moh’s birthday. Happy Birthday!
Visit the Burma Independence page to read more about this topic.
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