There were many other sights and sounds and gustatory experiences in Tachilek, Myanmar. However, I am growing less and less enamoured of simply taking out the camera (however disguised it is as my cell phone) and taking pictures. I will describe some of what was there for my brief stay, and encourage you, dear reader, to visit. Discover for yourself. My report is brief and meant to inform, but not replace direct experience. That is the most important, I am now convinced, for any sort of knowing.
- Writing predominantly in Myanmar and Chinese. Some speaking in Thai. A little in English. Much in Shan only (Tai Yai).
- Betel nut packages adorn roadside stalls, and their contents as red splotches on the ground.
- Many of the men wear the Longyi (sewn sarong), walking the streets, but jeans and other pants are more popular in the market.
- Women walk by with large wicker baskets held against their backs by woven straps supported by their foreheads. Both arms full of plastic grocery bags and the back packs half full.
- Tea shops and noodle houses. Some of the cooking done without ventilation beyond the open fourth wall.
- Islam and China, two influences which are much less evident in Thailand come on strong just across the border.
- Women in full black with only their eyes uncovered. This is a sight rare even in Indonesia, though I am not sure of how common it is in Indonesia. Perhaps these Muslims were immigrants and the dress uncommon for the area. Perhaps not.
- “Where are you from?” “I American, from Hawaii. Where are you from?” “I am Chinese.” “Myanmar-Chinese?” “No, all Chinese.”
- All in all, a good experience. I have my new longyi, and the second 60-day visa entry now begun.