The next day we woke up bright and early to head to the hill station city of Maymyo or as it is now known as Pai Ool Yin. First we stopped off at a Buddha statue inside a temple which was covered entirely by gold leaf. Over the course of a hundred years the thickness of the statue has increased by 9 cm. That 9 cm is solid 24 karat gold..
After the temple we drove 60 km to the hill station and we first went to a local market to see some of the local produce that they sell there. It ranged from a lot of vegetables, to flowers, to fish, to noodles and to dried spices. Afterwards we went to a Buddhist temple which is usually quiet but this time there was some celebration today. A young boy was celebrating becoming a monk and there was also an elephant dance which reminded me a lot of the lion dance. Afterwards we visited a man-made waterfall and a cave which has a Buddhist temple inside of it. Then we stopped for lunch which was situated in the middle of a strawberry farm. It made for a scenic and serene sight. Then we proceeded to visit some colonial buildings which bore similar architectural styles to the old buildings of Straits colonies. After the visit to these buildings we went to the Botanical gardens which we visited the last time we came here. It was incredibly crowded and noisy, it ruined the experience for me. Nevertheless I managed to find some calmness in the chaos of the huge groups to tourists in the form of the bamboo forest and the fossil museum within the gardens.
After the hill station we began the 60 km drive back to Mandalay. It gave me some time to look back on the trip. We got to thinking that we should come to Myanmar again. We feel that this time we visit the more remote states such as the Shan state and one of South East Asia’s largest lakes, Lake Inlay. That evening in the hotel we were treated to a Christmas dinner which consisted mainly of western food and some bad sangria. We were also treated to some carols by a local youth group. The choice in carols were rather interesting in the sense that majority songs had a lot of references to Christmas being the day Christ was born. It was all jolly interesting and enjoyable and soon we retired to rest up before the journey home.