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Thread: Mandalay Review

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    Mandalay Review

    Currently sat in a library devoid of books (they’re being repaired) in a child free school (they only have to be here for exams,lucky minions) so thought I would reflect and mull on a year in Mandalay. I’m going to miss this place, the positives have outweighed the annoyances by a considerable amount. So in no particular order of hierarchy, here are some reasons why Mandalay rocks as an expat destination.
    Local People: Mostly friendly and outgoing, it’s an easy city to make local friends and get involved in a number of societies, such as mountaineering (more of a tough hiking club,really). It’s also easy just to strike up conversations and beer stations and tea shops. As a teacher I have been invited to students’ homes a few times and it has always been a warm family welcome.

    Mandalay as a city: Well, in all fairness it does take a bit of getting used to! There is no public transport save for shared pickups; they’re off the cards unless you can speak and read Myanmar. I’ve used them a few times and find them to be good enough if I am not on a schedule. Shopping wise you can get pretty much anything here, if not you can always order from an ‘Online Shop’ and get an Amazon order sent in from China. Plenty of western food on offer, although quality can vary greatly. There’s plenty of Chinese and Indian food that is almost uniformly good. Gyms and swimming pools are springing up all they times, so prices for these are actually falling as the competition hots up.

    Travel outside of Mandalay: One of the things I will miss the most-situated at the Shan foothills, Mandalay is well situated for countryside breaks. If you like mountains, waterfalls, hiking, mountain biking and getting out on the motorbike then Mandalay is an ideal base. The international airport has regular flights to Bangkok and intermittent flights to Singapore and Hong Kong. Plenty of local flights, too.

    Work: From a teacher specific standpoint, I think this is a great place to come and work. In ten years of teaching I haven’t had such an enthusiastic, outgoing and polite bunch of kids. They come fully charged everyday and I hope I can find this boundless positive energy and zest for learning in my next job. No school is perfect, there have been some annoying days at work but I can probably count them on a few fingers. There are plenty of other expats in other fields of work. Certainly more scope for employment then dusty old Rangsit!

    No place on Earth is perfect, so here are some things I really didn’t enjoy about my time in Myanmar.
    The “Local” Food: By that I mean Bamar rice and curry- my stomach as never adapted to the oil and the fact it sits out in the sun most of the day
    Healthcare: I haven’t gotten sick here where staying would be necessary, which is a very good thing! Healthcare is terrible, if you have a major chronic illness you should probably think twice before living here.


    Racism: Very rarely directed at Caucasians, but there is no fact in hiding that Myanmar openly discriminates against Muslims and does so vocally and with violence. The same is true for the treatment of other ethnic minorities such as Shan and Kachin people.

    All in all a great experience and I’d recommend Mandalay to all.

  2. #2
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    What is the ethnic mix in Madalay mainly Birman Mon
    Are there any Karens?

    Also refreshing to read a posotive person giving a positive report here before the beer O'Clock threshold.
    You can take the wankquished outta wangsit , but some only get as far as Minivanburi or Chang Lie
    I used to have a job at a calendar factory.
    I got the sack because
    I took a couple of days off.

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    Quote Originally Posted by david44 View Post
    Thanks
    What is the ethnic mix in Madalay mainly Birman Mon
    Are there any Karens?

    Also refreshing to read a posotive person giving a positive report here before the beer O'Clock threshold.
    You can take the wankquished outta wangsit , but some only get as far as Minivanburi or Chang Lie
    Mostly Birman, with a lot of Chinese. Where's Chinatown in Mandalay? Everywhere!
    Most of my students study Chinese- 7 years old and well on the road to being multilingual- makes me look stupid, which isn't really a big challenge

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    Great but probably belongs in the Myanmar forum where people looking for such things might find it.

    Vietnam, Nepal and Burma Travel Forum

    Perhaps the mods can update the country name...

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    ความรู้ลึกลับ HuangLao's Avatar
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    Thanks, Manny.
    Fair, yet brief chronicle.

    I'm sure you could have expanded on insights and experiences.
    This thread might be a perfect vehicle regarding the everyday activities, reviews, and critiques of Mandalay and broader region.

    Continue on.....please.

    Cheers!


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    Nice summary, thanks!

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    Thailand Expat Luigi's Avatar
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    Cheers Loopy.


    Oddly enough/regrettably have only ever been in around the border areas. One place I've been meaning to explore further.

    Have always appreciated yours, yourdaddy, and Simon's threads.

    Hoping the place opens up more (it has a lot already even in the last 5 years or so) over the next 10+ years. Wanna do a 3 month+ motorbike tour of South-East Asia with the Sproglette when she's 15/16 and exploring/off roading Myanmar from end to end would be a big part of it.

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