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Inle – the Land Time Forgot

sunny 37 °C

Three thousand feet above sea level in the central Burmese Highlands there is a forgotten world; a land and a lake where time stopped a thousand years ago.
Cut off from the rest of the world by mountains, jungles and deserts, the peoples of Inle Lake carried on with their simple, though austere, life, unconcerned that the world was advancing without them. They built bamboo huts on stilts in the shallow lake so that they would be near to their food and safe from tigers and other wildlife…
The lake supplied them with all their of needs: It was a watery highway for their narrow wooden boats and it provided fresh water for drinking and bathing…
And for washing clothes and dishes…
It was also their sewer, (but least said about that the better).
The lake bed gave them clay to throw pots on rudimentary stone wheels…
While the surrounding forests provided wood for their fires and kilns…

This is a wood-fired pottery kiln circa 987AD which should be in an anthropological museum...
And here are the pots being loaded in canoes to go to the market...

The lake’s lotus plants gave them fibres from which to spin yarn and weave cloth on bamboo looms, and, of course, the lake provided them with an abundance of fish and shrimps…

All in all, a thousand years ago, the residents of Inle Lake had a life that was little different from many agrarian communities around the known world – it was a hard life with a short life span and little hope of anything better...
We are spending several days visiting the folks who live on and around Lake Inle and soon we will introduce you to the giraffe-necked women, the famous leg rowers, and the farmers whose fields actually float on the surface of the lake – and if you think that any of this is to entertain us tourists…think again.

We are now trapped in a time warp where despite our best efforts we have had great difficulty getting the steam powered internet to download our photos. We are searching for a way back to the 21st century and will resume blogging as soon as possible.
Stay tuned for a peek into an ancient world that will truly amaze you...

Posted by Hawkson 18:31 Archived in Myanmar

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You two simply amaze me, at every level. The question which comes to my mind, where are you staying when you in this environment??
keep it coming.. thanks

by gottfried

ditto for Godfried's comments - where DO you stay? We loved the pottery and wood gathering shots!

by joyce

Also, how did you get there? Doesn't sound like air-conditioned bus or boat country and what roads I can see look downright crude. Might be fun to ride in that oxen cart though.

by R and B

Your posting is interesting. We cannot imagine how other countries are and your blog brings the world into our home.
Love Jean and David

by Jean and David

I have just returned (yesterday) from visiting Kelly and Laura in Colombia. their finka (farm) is so amazing and Kellys hard work of growing food is gradually coming to fruitation. It is a beautiful place but I am glad to be home again.
This place where you are is totally interesting to see their beautiful pottery and the hard work they are doing but they are probably happier than most people who have "everything". Love Jean

by Jean McLaren

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