Every night of the year, on a small stage at the front of the family house, Lu Naw leads family members and friends in a comedic and cultural performance that pays homage to the original Moustache Brothers – Par Par Lay, Lu Naw and Lu Zaw.
The late Par Par Lay and his cousin Lu Zaw spent years in prison as a result of their outspoken performances. These days, the troupe is allowed to perform for foreign visitors only.
In 1784, King Bodawpaya and his Burmese Army seized an ancient bronze Buddha and transported it to this current site in Mandalay. In the gallery at Mahamuni, large paintings created in the 1950s tell the story of its epic journey.
Except for the face of the Buddha, which is polished by a monk every morning at 4 o’clock, the surface is covered in a six inch layer of gold, as a result of years of the application of gold leaf. Only male visitors to the pagoda are allowed to near the inner sanctum and place the leaf on the Buddha. The second photograph in this post was taken by my husband. I had a view further back with the women.
Ceramic jars like these are found all over Burma for people as accessible sources of cold drinking water.
Where? Just outside Mandalay, near the town of Amarapura on Taungthaman Lake.
What? The U Bein Bridge – the world’s oldest and longest teakwood bridge
When Burma’s capital city was moved to nearby Mandalay around 1859, U Bein, the mayor who served under Burma’s King Bodawpaya arranged for the dismantling and recycling of teak from the palace of Amarapura to construct this 1.2 km long bridge across the lake. With the exception of some more recent replacement concrete pylons, the bridge’s columns and planks are made entirely of teak.
The bridge serves commuters in the area, particularly during the peak hours around dawn and dusk.
Today was a Saturday, and a significant day in the Buddhist calendar. Everyone was out for the day and a gentle jostle was had by all as we crossed over the waterway and came back facing into the setting sun. Look Mum, no safety rails!
When we emerged from our visit to Mandalay Palace, our taxi driver was nowhere to be seen. We waited and waited in case he returned after perhaps taking another fare in this low season of work. He did not.
After a meal in a local restaurant, a walk around town on a Friday night. Finished up with a cold beer on the roof top and entertainment in the form of a young musician and a puppet show.
The dry is evident as you fly into Mandalay.
The wet season is somewhere around the corner.
It’s been late before to this part of the world.
Dry heat greets us off the plane.
Bus to the terminal.
Immigration arrival cards.
The higher the denomination,
the crisper the note,
the better the rate.
Shared taxi into town
Bougainvillea and flame orange colours
line the concrete highway.
The smell of gasoline.
Local passengers alight.
Driver puts windows up, air-con on.
Impolite to say no.
An unsealed road to our hotel.
Welcome to Mandalay.