Recovery at Inle Lake

Trip Start Oct 30, 2012
Trip End Feb 06, 2013

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, Shan,
Tuesday, December 11, 2012

We feel exhausted after the trekking, physically and mentally. So instead of booking the obligatory day boat trip - we feel the boat trip at the end of the trekking already showed us much of the beauty of the Inle lake - we stay in the village and discover other secrets here: burmese massage, burmese food and cycling through the rural areas around the lake. Nice added value today: all other tourists have gone for the day :-).

Just opposite our hotel is a famous massage parlour that offers traditional burmese massages, run by a family in the 6th generation. Well, what can we say about it? Maybe the best way to describe it is that they literally kick the pains out of our muscles. Burmese massage is characterized mainly by stimulation of the blood circulation. This includes standing with all the masseuse's weight on the front and the back of your thighs and treading their feet on your back, arms and legs. Sounds brutal, but in fact it is really relaxing. Afterwards we are advised not to shower today, as the freed toxics need to exit our bodies through the pores. So we stink on doctors orders this time.

Time for food and we decide not to follow the LP - actually we strongly advise LP to take the Myanmar guide from the market as it is heavily outdated, even if just one year old - and to follow our instincts. Here we are: The Aurora restaurant. Maybe due to the trekking we order a lot: rice crackers, day fresh Inle fish, avocado salad, tomato salad and the traditional noodles of the Shan region. The rice crackers came first, and you should have seen our eyes (see foto and you know why). Surprisingly - or maybe not? - we manage to process the amount of fingerlicking good food (admittedly we take some of the rice crackers with us for later).

Some physical exercise will do us good, so we hire bicycles and explore the surroundings of the lake. Again some monasteries and pagodas, a lot of farmers and fishermen doing their daily jobs, but the real wow of the afternoon are water buffalos that we come across. First in the distance wading through flooded rice paddies but later on just a few meters away from us swimming through a water canal. Truly amazing animals! Actually quite scary with their enormous horns, but their character isn't. In Europe we have our cows, here they have their buffalos. And very funny: a farmer getting his flock of ducks into their night shelter, crossing the street in a very dusty stampede :-)

On our way back we meet Gerald again, our German trekking friend. He has taken the day trip on the lake! I realize that i have lost a lot of the typical German 'Durchsetzungsvermoegen' :-)

We feel that we want to stay another day here, it's such a relaxed place. But we have a plane to catch tomorrow morning to our last highlight of our Myanmar trip, the golden rock. For the first time in Myanmar we are sad that we are not able to change our travel itinerary. The only thing that helps it washing down our pain with Myanmar beer and another bottle of Myanmar red wine.
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