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We are supposed to meet back in the lobby at 4:30 pm.
The bus brought us from the hotel to the Shwedagon Pagoda (read about it at the top of the blog). First we took our shoes off and then took an elevator up. From there we walked across a bridge with wrought iron left and right. What came then is unbelievable. I ended up taking a million pictures since I didn't know what was around the many corners.
If I understood this right, people/families make donation to build these many many individual "shrines" in honor or memory, each probably trying to out-do the neighbor. The main gigantic stupa in the middle is solid inside but clad outside with pure gold. People donate and every 5 years another layer of those pure gold shingles are nailed over what's already there. If I understood (and remember right) there are already 4.something billion (US dollars?) up there.
Anyway, it's impossible to really catch and show here what we saw but here are some impressions. Some pictures are from James. I have a great panorama picture I had to take out again. I guess it's too big and Blogsy crashes every time I want to upload. Oh well ...
While Ronald was explaining all I could do is look at the figures behind him and think of my friend Kim's collection.
Guide Ronald is a Buddhist and tries his best to explain all of it to us. All I can think of is how happy I am to be a Christian. I am not seeing the love we get from our Father and his Son in this.
James took also a really great little video but that might be added when we are back home.
This pagoda is very impressive. The stupa is supposed to contain relics from each of the previous 4 Buddhas.
Back to where we started and off to dinner.
Dinner was at a restaurant with a French name "La Maison" but with Burmese food. It was not memorable. But the table talk, getting to know our fellow travelers, was excellent.
I am over yesterday's culture shock and we thoroughly enjoyed the day. There is more to this city then we saw yesterday. In the bus Ronald tries to explain to us the history and the political situation now etc. while at the same time scenery is going by and you don't want to miss anything. A lot to digest.