Myanmar Musings 3 -Temples & Kings: Stories of Bagan

Bagan is a small town (pop. 50000) in the Mandalay Province of Myanmar. The name ‘Bagan’ is probably derived from Pyu-gon (The Pyu Place), because the Pyus were the original natives of Bagan. The Pyus traded with India, and encouraged many schools of Buddhism, Hinduism and Animism. By the 9th century  the mainstream Burman (or…

In Praise of Jawa

Jawa would grace the Indian roads again! (New Indian Express ). When I read the news in the New Indian Express, I experienced a wave of nostalgia. My first bike was a Yezdi (Jawa family). In the 1960s & 70s every youngster dreamt of mastering Jawa skills. (This was before the IT revolution, when Java…

Footloose in KL -1: Malaysian Grace

The Plan Kuala Lumpur (KL) was not in our original Travel Plan.  But our flight to Yangon included a 6-hour stopover in KL; why waste it in the airport, when a beautiful city waited outside to reveal her charms?  We added 2 days to The Plan to take care of the unknown charms of KL.…

Myanmar Musings 1: Balloons, Boats & Bagan

Mother Nature’s munificence Soon after Myanmar got independence, the new rulers evicted the British, shunned other nations and followed an inward looking socialism. The isolationism left Myanmar technologically behind the world by several decades. Yet, on the positive side, cities are virtually free from pollution (where are the industries and dirty factories?), and in rural…