Relishing every last minute in this paradise, I took an early morning swim. Patricia was already out on the beach somewhere collecting special shells. There were little scratched patterns around holes in the sand where the hermit crabs had been busy in the night. The sea was like a more than luke-warm bath and clear to the sand on the bottom.
We met up for breakfast in Sandoway Hotel Resort. This was a fully waitressed affair on a decked restaurant on the beach about 200 meters from our residence. After eating a full English breakfast, the morning was spent swimming, lazing and more swimming, with the odd green coconut drink thrown in and a banana or two! How could we leave this?!
But leave we must! After a light lunch at our favourite restaurant and saying our goodbyes, the taxi drove us back to the airport to catch our flight back to Yangon.
The familiar face of Nye, our Yangon guide, was there to greet us and it was good to recall all our experiences since we left him over a week ago. As we waited in heavy traffic I noticed this little chap peeping through some railings and then at some lights a very English looking Cathedral stood out on our right side. Nye told me it was The Holy Trinity Anglican Cathedral built in the early 20th century for the English fighting in Burma. Despite there being louvers, I read in Doves Guide later that there were no bells and that the pipe organ had been damaged in the war and had been replaced with an electric one.
We mentioned that we hoped to visit a market for last minute shopping but he said it was a military holiday so they were all closed. However he did take the trouble of leaving us to browse a gift shop while he took green tea. Here somehow we managed to spend almost every last dollar. I particularly wanted some jagoree – a fudge made from Palm sap but he said this could only be found in the Bagan region, however he would see what he could do! In this country it would seem “Your wish is our command”.
Nye had one more excursion up his sleeve for us this afternoon – China town! This was a busy, exciting and very colourful spectacle . We saw foods we’d never seen before and Nye explained, in the detail only a local could, what they were and their various uses. Eventually he spied jagoree and paid for several packs for us as we had no chats left – just the equivalent of 30p a pack!!!
We returned to the same hotel in which we began our Burma adventure and then walked along to The Friendship restaurant again for dinner. We had thought this very cheap when we ate there over a week ago. But by comparison with all the little local restaurants on our travels around Burma, this was dear – 3 times the price in fact, plus they gave us a poor rate of exchange 900 chats to the $1. Heho.
After a fitful sleep I woke just before the alarm went off at 5am. We ate bits of a packed breakfast supplied by the hotel in the reception area, when Nye appeared to transport us to Yangon International Airport.
Slight worry filling in the immigration form as I’d put a my entry visa in my case thinking I no longer needed it. However, no problem, they had all my details on their system, so relaxed with a coffee.
The flight took off on time 7.55 en route to Doha. Comfortable flight with Qatar and a quick transfer to our London flight. This leg of the journey seemed like and eternity but a G&T followed by an excellent roast lamb dinner (or was it lunch?) did ease the monotony a little. Plus, over the whole flight period, I did managed to watch a complete series of Downton Abbey!