Sunday 10 Dec
4400 temples! Eh? I thought 1 would be enough...
Luckily we did not actually have to see all of the 4400 temples and pagodas which take up an area of about 42 square km around Bagan. At this stage of the game I am all 'templed out' before I even arrive in a new city!
But this was actually lots of fun - we hired a horse (Madonna) cart for the day which I swear was straight out of Mark Twain and I felt like Huckleberry Finn all day long on the back of that thing. All I needed to complete the picture was a piece of straw hanging from my mouth. The sights were simply stunning (see pics) - we were blown away by the ancients who spent all their time and money building these things. Turned out to be not such a clever plan because they spent so much money on them that their defences were weakened and the Mongols (if I remember correctly) invaded and occupied them and that was the end of independence for a long while.
We spent many a pleasant evening in 'restaurant row' eating under the stars and filling our tummys with startlingly good food. Surprisingly avocado is big in Myanmar and since it is big with us we had it with practically every meal! I unfortunately suffered from a bit of a vomitgate after drinking something dodgy and had to rush back home after having just sat and ordered at this restaurant. They were so sweet and even offered to bring all the food to our hotel. And then to top off the sweetness our hotel delivered all this special food and drink to me the next day for free to make sure I was on the mend!
I could write some more about our cycling drama the next day which landed in tears but that would be too embarrassing so I'll skip it! We left early in the morning to head for Kalaw to start our trek to Inle Lake in a decrepit local bus on unfinished dusty roads.
Link to Bagan Pics