Thursday Doors

Thursday Doors in Myanmar

“It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas
Everywhere you go
There’s a tree in the Grand Hotel “

Well, this is the Nyaungshwe City Hotel at the end of November. They are gearing up to Christmas, even though the vast majority of the population are Buddhist. The City Pub is decked with spray-on fake snow. Pretty boring set of doors, otherwise.

You’ll have to go on a diet after all that fattening Christmas feasting to get through this temple door at In Dein. This structure was built in the 13th century, but was abandoned and swallowed up by the jungle. It has been renovated over the past ten years, but some pagodas have been left in ruins with trees growing out of their brickwork.

This is the Hsinphyumae Pagoda in Mingun, on the banks of the Irrawaddy (Ayeyarwady is the new name) River. It is blindingly white. Up at the top of the pagoda, you can see this metal door. It is Myanmar’s version of the Taj Mahal – it was constructed in 1816 representing the mythical heavenly abode of the gods, Mount Meru, by the King and dedicated to his wife Hsinphyuma who died in childbirth. Her title was Lady of the White Elephant.

Back in Rangoon (Yangon is the modern name), the former capital of Burma, the colonial architecture is beginning to crumble. The building with wooden shutters/doors was a court, but is now used by the police.

Other doorways in Yangon are used by vendors of street food. Anyone fancy a dish of purple sago? I am not sure what the green bits are, perhaps lumps of jelly. Delicious.