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My theme this year is Burma AKA Myanmar. I used to live in Laos, so this was a return to Southeast Asia that I looked forward to. I spent a little over three weeks exploring this country, learning a bit about its culture: its history, religion, and language. I thought others might enjoy some of what I learned and see some of what I saw.
While there are varying degrees of plastic debris in the country, there does seem to be at least an effort to clean up the pollution caused by disposable packaging. The government has banned non-recyclable plastic bags and there is something of a recycling and reusing program going on.
|A Began Monastery Kid|
No Shoes Allowed in any Monastery
Began's cleanliness was the most impressive. Notice how shiny the tiles in this monastery are. They all were very clean and the streets had no litter.
|A Little Garbage|
Mandalay was a mess of garbage strewn gutters in the downtown area. I found this image on the linked page because I lost the picture I'd taken when walking the streets of this city. And if you ever do walk the streets of Mandalay, never take your eyes from where you're about to step. Sidewalks end without notice. They are caved in some places, and a misstep will land you in a lovely sewer a few feet below ground. At one major cave in, someone had cleverly placed a piece of cardboard over the hole. I called OSHA, but they didn't answer.
Not to leave on a negative note, overall, Burma was far above many developing countries I've been to in terms of keeping their cities clean.
Don't get me started on China.
Answers to D: What do you know about Dogs in Burma?
T 1. While there are tons of stray dogs in Burma, there's not much to fear from them. (They're usually intent on finding food and shelter. But there is rabies, and I read that the hemoglobin to ward off the disease if bitten is almost non-existent in Burma.)
T 2. Dogs in Burma (ergo anywhere in world where there is little to no care) can have sexually transmitted disease. (This even surprised one vet I read about.)
NOW what do you know about how Burma and its environment?
T/F 1. One recommendation by policy makers is to stop foreign investors from investing in Burma's energy sector.
T/F 2. Burma has no Asian elephants in undeveloped areas.