Bougie in Bagan

Bagan was on my bucket list for this trip, along with Chiang Rai, and they were two things I was pretty bossypants about seeing.

Kat in Bagan

Kat in Bagan

This meant, of course, a beastly bus ride. At 7am sharp a pickup truck with a mattress in it came to fetch us at our hotel and we crawled into the back of it. Then we got on the bus for a grueling nine hour ride. Let me tell you, the ride in the pickup truck was smoother than this bus ride. The next day our butts still hurt and we had to sit funny. My butt hurt laying in bed on my back. I do not wish that upon anyone. Or their tailbone.

However the bus ride was a distant memory by the time we got to Bagan.

Check out the VIEWWWWW!

Check out the VIEWWWWW!

We stayed in a lovely hotel,  Blue Bird, which was real luxury and an amazing value. One of the owners is french and the hotel served fresh, homemade yogurt with breakfast. I just about died.  For long-term travelers in Asia, dairy products are the ultimate luxury right behind water pressure, towels that don’t feel like sandpaper, and filtered coffee.  Even a pool is like, whatever, when there is DAIRY.

I loved Bagan so much. What’s to say about it?  It was gorgeous. Everywhere you looked were temples, pagodas, monasteries, and other holy buildings. You can hire a car, a bike, or a horse cart and take in the sights. Fully embracing our “Bougie in Burma” mantra, we went car. We had a hilarious driver who “spoke English” who made us laugh all the time because how we might say “Excuse me” or “sorry” to interject into a side conversation, he said “HELLO.” It wasn’t just a “hello?” IT WAS A COMMAND. HELLO.

We saw a ton of Buddhas:

Buddha being mindful

Buddha being mindful

Buddha!

Buddha!

 

superman Buddha!

superman Buddha!

 

We saw a ton of pagodas:

fancy gold one

fancy gold one- when the wind blew the chimes would ring which were amazing

pagodas!

pagodas!

pagodas!

pagodas!

pagodas!

pagodas!

 

 

We saw a ton of temples (and their guardian lion-dogs)

Dave enhancing the view

Dave enhancing the view

lion-dog!

lion-dog!

Temples!

Temples!

 

We made some merit, by pouring water over the Buddha associated with which day of the week you were born (Dave, a Thursday. Monday for me) once for every year you have been alive and one more for good luck.

Dave and Thursday Buddha bro-ing out

Dave and Thursday Buddha bro-ing out

Also, the old-fashioned way, MONEY!

Dave wishing for a spectacular sunset

Dave wishing for a spectacular sunset

 

We were dusty, exhausted, and I loved every minute of it.

We watched sunset with our feet dangling over the side of a temple after climbing up some very tiny stairs lit with rapidly shrinking candles. It was romantic to see the whole of Bagan– over 50 km– of temples as far as the eye could see as the sky turned pink and purple.

pre-camera death

pre-camera death

To enhance the mood, Dave started doing that “I love to sound like a jaded long-term traveler” smug thing he does when his eyes glaze over and he just ranks places he’s been that are further plane rides than places you may have been on a plane. OR NOT!  He decided sunset in Bagan was not as climactic as being in Angkor Wat.

So, I told him to shut up.

Then the camera broke.

So much for making merit.

We were then mindful of the impermanence of both Dave’s smugness and my hot temper about the camera breaking and went to go drink beer.

being mindful of our faces

being mindful of our faces

 

 

 

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2 responses to “Bougie in Bagan

  1. So looking forward to Bagan and Lake Inle this fall. Love every post. In DC for EC. We won Steering Committee of the Year!!!

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