Wednesday, 30 January 2019

Daily Life At Sule Pagoda In Yangon

Sule Pagoda sits in the middle of a prominent roundabout in downtown Yangon. It's the central symbol of the city, acting as a golden compass. Inside, a steady stream of worshippers pop in, part of their daily routine.

Use the main stupa of Sule to get your urban bearings.

Hanging out with the faithful. It's busy at the complex, these guys cranking out offerings.

A golden coconut.

Details and figures.

Getting a little creepy.

Monday, 28 January 2019

Marveling The Musmeah Yeshua Synagogue

Yangon has one synagogue, built in the mid-1890s to serve a Jewish community that emigrated mostly from Iraq. Today the community is down to fewer than two dozen people.

Hats off to Sarah's employer, the US State Department, for partnering with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) to renovate and preserve the synagogue. The project was completed in 2013. The building is in great shape.

Entrance. The synagogue is located downtown, on a side street mostly lined with hardware and dry goods shops.


Center Bimah.

Looking back.

The ark area, where the Torah is kept.

Friday, 25 January 2019

The Typewriter Women

In Yangon, if you need something typed or copied, there are establishments around that can help you out. Think of them as big, old-school computers.

Typical stall.

Typewriters, ready for action.

You need English or Burmese? They're ready.

Portrait of a typist.

Wednesday, 23 January 2019

The Lay Of The Land At The Yangon Zoo

Taking a closer look beyond the animals at the Yangon Zoo. It's a little rough around the edges and also includes a few cartoony touches. The zoo has its own style.

Elephant enclosure, looking a bit like a WWII bunker.

Tiger and zebra cages, old school bars and Asian pagoda hints.

French maid trashcan.

Lots of plastic animals around, in case the real ones fail to impress.

Mud and heavily protected trees, another nod to military architecture.

Monday, 21 January 2019

A Visit To The Yangon Zoo

Yep, all the animals were there. A random look at who was out and about at the Yangon Zoo.

Hello hippo.

Otters, king of quick curious. And a curious camel.

Relaxing rhino.

The animal that needs only a tiny introduction. Croc, drifting.

Deer, in staring sync.

Friday, 18 January 2019

Yangon Old Office Building

The British built an impressive number of colonial structures while in Myanmar, most of them still in use by the government. There are also buildings from the same era, now used as offices, if not quite for their original purpose or condition.

Typical exterior, a brick facade, overgrown trees, rich patina.

Heading in. The awning is a later addition, among many add-ons that disguise the original entrance. Inside, the floors have been carved up into little office stalls, completely obliterating the original floor layouts.

Typical tiny office.

The center courtyard has also seen radical alterations, a spiderweb of plumbing added. You do not want to see the bathrooms on the other side of the piping. It's a bit like a Tim Burton set in the dark stairway.

A sign too hard to resist. That's me!

Wednesday, 16 January 2019

Selling The Western Fantasy In Yangon Ads

Big, modern picture ads are everywhere along the streets of Yangon, promising a modern, exciting world to waiting consumers. This world tilts toward the west and light complexions.

There's also a bit of an incongruity in how one would expect the usual marketing campaigns to be. High glamor models better suited for a liquor ad pushing bullion?

A peek at modern living, airline travel and a cell phone.

It's all transient, yesterday's aspiration is today's table wrap.

Young women are always good salespeople, pushing insurance and travel. The gentleman has seen it all before.

Wishful thinking at a street stall.

Monday, 14 January 2019

Chinese Temple Style In Yangon

Myanmar, like most Asian countries, has a Chinese presence. Dotted around the city are a few temples catering to this minority.

The front courtyard of the Kheng Hock Keong temple.

Fancy courtyards and altar spaces.

Temples are a great place for perpetual socializing.

Offering details. Don't forget to stuff an icon with a little Lipo.

Study of a prayer alcove in white and red.