What are some unexpected things first-time visitors to Myanmar notice?
I was born in Myanmar but had left in the 70s and returned 27 years later for a visit. What did I notice? That it was beautiful. That surprised me. When you are living there you don’t notice it. The flora and fauna and the sunsets.
How VERY, VERY religious they were. Monasteries literally every few yards Buddhist monk robe stores, Buddhist statuary stores everywhere I went in a grocery store and waited while a young sales clerk prayed right in front of me until another clerk saw her praying and came to help. Did not seem to resent it. My innkeeper bragged about how religious they were I don’t recall this degree of religiosity when I was growing up. Maybe it’s the hard times? Lack of other distractions?
Unreliability of electricity everyone owns a generator.
The dirt and grime on beautiful old colonial buildings heartbreaking. How rundown every building was except for monasteries.
Went to look at my old medical school badly needs a coat of paint. Just the general deterioration of buildings.
The cost of hotel rooms the cost of apartments the traffic!!!!!!
No real traffic laws or lanes. The congestion probably kept speeds and casualties low.
The friendly people. EXTREMELY safe. Though they say it’s changing now with phone and computer muggers.
Rainy season road flooding. A regular hazard.
The lack of spontaneity in children always very controlled.
No trash cans people just throw trash everywhere.
I rented a friend’s apartment, the stairs were filthy. None of the tenants took the trouble to sweep. I took a broom and swept daily No one else seemed to care. Not a very high sense of civic duty or pride.
Many western expats.
Mostly young ones and Expat bars. Never saw them before but then I didn’t go to bars in my youth lots of westernized bands in 19th street area.
Sounds depressing? Maybe a brand new newcomer would be more enthusiastic.
Translated by 饶溪 from 缅甸观察网