仰光元首級的 Chatrium Hotel/李明熙

2012 年奧巴馬訪問緬甸,緬甸與美國再次恢復邦交,仰光巿內亦出現了第一間肯德基炸雞店。負責接待奧巴馬的 Chatrium Hotel Royal Lake Yangon,至今依然保安嚴密,汽車和客人進入酒店前都要接受安檢。

我們入住的房間在 Chatrium Club 之列,Check-in 安排在 9 樓的會員專區,提供免費小食及飲料,我們每次出入酒店都會到專區歇一歇,喝杯醒神冷飲。房間向著 Kandawgyi 湖及仰光最著名 Shwedagon 佛塔,晚上站在陽台欣賞金碧輝煌的佛塔成了我們最享受的事情。從酒店步行到佛塔,不用半小時,非常方便。



酒店內的 Emporia 餐廳有道地的緬甸菜套餐,正好讓我們在遊緬甸之前,向大廚學習一下緬甸的傳統美食。

海鮮為緬甸沿海居民的主食,內陸的吃肉類家禽,近河的則吃河魚河蝦。不同民族有不同烹調風格,套餐的前菜主菜連甜品一共十多款美食,包含了各民族的烹調精髓。因應地理環境,緬甸菜帶有中、泰、印度風格,眼看似曾相識,放進嘴裡就發現,本地香料調配出色,把每道菜都變得獨特緬甸味。Kim 最愛崩大碗沙律,味道清新獨特;我則愛的是辣子炒鮎魚,無骨又可口。

緬甸有句諺語:水果之中,芒果最佳;肉類之中,豬肉最佳;葉子之中,Lahpet 最佳。Lahpet 是種小食,主要是醃製茶葉配蠶豆、花生和葡萄乾,加點青檸和檸檬汁,每樣材料一茶匙地放進口,還未夠重口味的可以再咬生蒜頭及青辣椒,一下子擊中口裡甜酸苦辣四種味蕾。要中和這重口味,最好學緬甸人喝杯煉奶奶茶,超甜,但作為下午茶餐,倒是不錯。





Myanmar Smiles/Kimberlogic

Yangon is a bustling city in southern Myanmar, and our first stop on this trip. Our first encounter with the people of Myanmar was at the Chatrium Hotel Royal Lake Hotel. Everyone we met; from the manager to the chef, the reception staff to the gardeners, always had big smiles and were happy to greet us. Hotel staff is normally friendly, but at that time we had no idea that the warmth of these people wasn’t just in the hotel, but throughout their culture.

Early that evening, we decided to walk to Shwedagon Pagoda, the country’s most famous and wonderful pagoda. Along our walk there, the sights we encountered were not much different than many Southeast Asian countries, except for the dress of the men. Men in Myanmar wear longyis, which are basically long skirts. Seeing both businessmen and teenagers in longyis takes away any edge to them and immediately made us feel more comfortable walking along the dark, quiet street.



Shwedagon Pagoda was different from other pagodas we have seen and as magnificent as we had been told. Everything within the Pagoda’s area sparkled with gold, lights, marble and even diamonds. Even though it was a dark, cloudy night, the gold of the pagoda illuminated everything around it. We were able to clearly understand and observe from the devout crowd of all ages, the significance that this pagoda has for most of the Burmese people.

2016_09_myanmar-day01_05We were approached by a few guides offering tours. They were very pleasant and they wanted to have a conversation; even when we declined their service, they still smiled and wanted to know more about us. On our walk around the pagoda, we stopped at a quiet corner to take photos in front of the pagoda. While Ming Hay was adjusting the camera settings, he could see by my face that I became uneasy. He turned around to see that we had attracted a large crowd. A group of young girls approached him to ask permission to take a photo with me. The people were so curious and welcoming of us into their culture. We returned to our hotel that first night feeling excited for more chances to mingle with the locals.

The next day we toured the whole city of Yangon. Everywhere we went we were greeted with smiles and interest. We felt like celebrities with all of the photos we were asked to be a part of, but it was never an inconvenience or made us uncomfortable. Even people that didn’t speak any English still came up to us to have a conversation or to offer us help or even shade.

Throughout all of my travels, I have never looked at any culture as unfriendly, but I have never experienced all of my social relations within a country to be as kind and heartfelt as in Myanmar. We normally focus on food, nature or the sights in a city, but in Myanmar is the first time (although the pagodas are amazing), the people are what made our trip remarkable.

※ 此欄文章為作者觀點,不代表本網立場。 ※
李明熙、Kimberlogic 雜碎集

我們沒分東方或西方思想,只想以雜碎的遊歷去建立自己的世界觀和價值觀。We are neither eastern nor western mind. We just want to establish our worldview and values through traveling. 【李明熙】 曾用七個月時間從柏林踏單車回港,又不自量力參加蒙古越野單車賽。現從事影像製作、旅遊、教育等,自我催眠周身刀。著有「陌路回家」、「單車遊牧」及「良業遊民」。 【Kimberlogic】 An American who resides on the small island of Peng Chau, in Hong Kong, has a passion for traveling, partaking in local food and drink, different cultures and customs and watching people react to the world around them.