While Andrew and Kallie are on honeymoon and Lindsey has departed for Uganda, Steve and I, in addition to one of our other friends, Patrick, who has joined us from his fall cycle tour in New Zealand for 3 weeks, have decided to go to Burma/Myanmar for 2 weeks. This will likely be the most adventurous part of the trip because it is less traveled (or was, now there are over 100 people getting visas a day here in Bangkok). We wanted to bicycle through Burma on the first trip, but were discouraged by learning that foreigners cannot cross land borders for longer than one day, so most have to fly and fly out. We again have found this to be true. But, we have also found cheap flights from Bangkok and decided to take this opportunity to visit this more rarely visited country that has received so much press in the last year for “opening up” and having “positive reforms.” While many caution about being too quick to praise the leaders of Myanmar, I think the best way to learn about a country is to go and see life on the ground myself.
We have read several blogs of cyclists who toured there last year and are heartened to learn that it is possible to bicycle there and that the local authorities are friendly and helpful, not to mention everyone raving about the nice people everywhere. We will likely not have internet (except for the start and end of our trip in the capital, Yangon) until we return to Bangkok on Feb 12th 2013, please do not be worried about this. Prayers for smooth traveling and safety are always welcomed.
For me, this is the last leg of this 6 month tour, and the most exciting. More to come later!