Sunday, June 10, 2007

Inle Lake

After three days of exhausting, but rewarding trekking, we finally reached Inle Lake. We said goodbye to Alex and Como-Say and hired a boat for the next day.

Austin, Alex and Como-Say on the boat to Inle.

Austin lines up a shot.

The Intha people live in stilt homes on the lake. They also grow their vegetables on the water. Lake-bottom weeds are gathered and piled in rows, anchored by bamboo shoots, providing a suitable garden for growing all sorts of produce. The gardens are also resistant to flooding because whenever the water level rises, so do the gardens.

Longboat fishermen.

The Intha fishermen use these cone-shaped nets to trap fish. At its deepest point, the lake is only twelve feet. Unique to Inle is the rowing style in which the fisherman wraps his leg around the pole and paddles with his leg. This gives them a better vantage point to see the fish.

Burmese VCDs for sale, along with what looks like medication.

At the market.

At lunch our driver took us to his friend's place for a traditional Intha meal. (Intha being the people living on the lake.) Apart from the French Fries, I think it was more or less authentic. In any case, it was delicious and that's all that matters.

Our host's kitty, whom we nicknamed Loopy, was indeed a bit loopy. The way she ate was very strange. When feeding her dried noodles she would bite it like a fish would, in one lightning-fast motion. We chalk it up to her being cooped up in a stilt house on the water, with very little space to run around. Perhaps she spends more time with fish than she does with cats.

The somewhat touristy lakeside market at Inle.

Nuns walk the city gathering alms.

At the Jumping Cat Monastery, the monks have trained their cats to leap through hoops set at least a meter high. As these cats know, it's best to have a hearty breakfast before the jumping begins.

Performing for tourists can really take it out of you.

This kitten is quite content to just play with this broom.

The skies were incredible in front of this pagoda.

On the way home we were treated to a beautiful sunset complete with rainbow. At the time it was raining so we would take turns holding the umbrella while the other frantically took shots and wiped off his lens. Right in the middle of all these incredible photo opportunities, Austin's camera battery suddenly died. Shortly after that, I found that I had no space on my card, so I desperately deleted photos from the beginning of the day while Austin took out his battery, shook it, and replaced it, hoping to get a few more shots. Eventually, both camera's battery's died, so we just sat back and enjoyed the show.

-- Will


Anonymous said...

Hi WIll,
We're in the motel here in Orangeville after the wedding of Ryan and Sarah! We had a ball! The wedding was beautiful and the weather was perfect. Now we're ready to go home. Your pictures are beautiful and we look forward to seeing you soon when you come here in the fall. Love you very much! See you in September!

Take care
Oma van Engen

Anonymous said...

Hey Will!
We missed you here in Ontario!
Everyone was asking about you. Too bad you couldn't come. I can't wait until you come home! See you soon!


p.s. You're pictures are amazing! Oh and I don't think I thanked you for the Tshirt. It's awesome!

Will said...

Hey Oma and Julie,
I really wish I could have been there! I can't wait to see the video!

Love you both lots!

Anonymous said...

Hey, William,

I have been enjoying your amazing pictures!! WOW!
We are going through a heatwave right now--hot and humid weather (in the high 20's C but with the humidex in the 30's C)for this week. Spoke to your mom this morning. She was visiting oma van der Laan.
Enjoy the remainder of your awesome trip.
Love tante

eye in the sky said...

Really like the pics with the nuns walking by the footbridge and the rainbow and raft. Capturing those moments are nothing short of magical.

Christabelle said...

I just want to let you know I painted a picture using oil pastel after your picture I think the 5th picture down. Thank you.=)