Myanmar was amazing, hot, intensive and complex when I visited Yangon, Bagan, Mt. Popa, Mandalay and Lake Inle. It is one of the last frontiers proven by the locals who are still somewhat smitten by tourists. The country and its people are another story. Today it’s about hazards and happenstance.
A friend and I were staying in a bed and breakfast of sorts the night before an early flight to Bagan. We were on the third floor of an old house with its own staircase, peculiar plumbing and bars on all the windows.
Unaccustomed to the time zone and the barking dogs, the alarm clock was turned off. Up, dressed and ready to go until we tried the door. It would not open, not with a key, not with a push, not even with attempted unhinging. The windows and the bars were also immobilized.
Daylight was beginning to break and all was quiet, including the hounds, giving me a chance of a boisterous soliloquy. I was a little frightened, mostly about missing my flight, but claustrophobia was lurking. I yelled “help” and then “fire” because people sometimes don’t like your danger. My roommate hissed at me for waking up the neighborhood! Thank goodness I ignored the plea for politeness .
In what seemed like hours, a young woman climbed the steps to check on the racket. She tried opening it from the outside with the key I pushed through the bars. Nothing. She then awoke the innkeeper who managed to take off the doorknob; to no avail. Finally her robust husband appeared and wasted no time in throwing his half-naked body against the door thereby creating a passable hole for us to get out with our bags and eat breakfast before the cab appeared.
Coincidently, the lock at a hotel in Mandalay also failed; luckily I was outside the room and could get help.
The last night of the incredible journey found me in Yangon again, this time, however, at a fancy hotel. My daughter, who travels globally for business was in town! A small world indeed.