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Yangon

I am nearing the end of my trip, and have arrived in Yangon late yesterday. Fortunately, as I got to the airport, there was yet another change in schedule, and I only had to make one stopover in Mandalay as opposed to a second one in Bagan. And if it hadn't been for the French package tourists, wo were nasty (= unwashed, or with a really bad perfume), smelly (I think they all suffered from diarrhoea and couldn't control their exhausts) and rather obnoxious (= loud, and unwilling to speak English, aggrevating themselves why the Burmese wouldn't talk French to them), I might well have enjoyed the trip. I did finish Murakami's book as we touched down in Yangon, and I really enjoyed it. Give it a week, then I'll know whether it has replaced "Wild Sheep Chase" as my favourite of his books.

One problem overshadowed the entire day, nevertheless, and I think it must relate to bad food the night before at the Four Sisters Inn in Nyaung Shwe (not meaning to badmouth them, such things can happen): Around noon, I started feeling nausea every now and then, and my stomach apparently meant to tell me that something's not right, my belly feeling hot to the touch. I was then sure I'd come down with another food poisoning, but so far (24 hours later), my body has not revolted yet and the symptoms are fading, so maybe it's strong enough to cope without sending me to bed for a day. Which would be rather unfortunate.

The hotel, which I prearranged over the Internet, is nice, and in a very good location. Upon arrival, I tried to score new reading material at one of the bookstores but found them closed already, so I ate some food at the market (not giving my stomach a break, really), had a couple of beers at a small bar, and finally fell asleep to a crap action movie involving a kidnapping and many cellphones on the TV, with the intention not to get out of bed until I could not sleep anymore.

And that I did. When I finally went to breakfast, it was almost 9 o'clock, which is averagely three hours later than the last two weeks, and tried to figure out what to do for the day. Of course, I am haunted by bad spirits because even here in Myanmar, which is not socialist (anymore), the first of May is still a holiday, meaning that most sights and shops (including the ENglish bookstore) are closed for the day. I'll thus consider just roaming the streets, getting out of the heat at noon to watch a movie at the cinema (which is supposed to be a big event on holidays), write some more blog entries, and then possibly hire a guide for Shwedagon Paya towards the evening, 2-3 hours before sunset.

Thanks for reading along.