Markets of Myanmar

My first experience of Myanmar is one of the most vivid of my trip. I stayed in the middle of a farmer's market in Mandalay, not knowing what exactly was ahead of me in this new country

Shallots, Garlic, Chilis

Rice

Rice

Dried Fish - so much dried fish!

In this wholesale market vendors sold shallots, chilis, garlic and dried fish in bulk. The smell was pungent. Adding to the experience, the hotel typically lost power during the heat of mid-day, leaving windows open to the breeze. I survived it, and perhaps this is why I love Balachaung, an intense condiment made of these strong flavors and oil.

Dried Chilis

Dried Chilis

Shallots

Shallots

Dried Fish

Weird combinations: Monks line up for offerings in front of a truck load of shallots

Weird combinations: Monks line up for offerings in front of a truck load of shallots

The most gangsta meat market in Burma.

The most gangsta meat market in Burma.

Market by candlelight

Market by candlelight

I bought a small bag of dried chilis from one vendor at a pre-dawn market. The alley was lit with candles as far as I could see, illuminating butchered meat and strange vegetables. There were no fruits for me to buy here, and I had no way of cooking vegetables or meat, so I pointed out to a small bag of dried chilis. The woman began motioning, her hands waving up and down in front of her open mouth, worried I wouldn't handle the heat. I nodded and smiled, she smiled back happy to be understood

Dried Chili vendor

Dried Chili vendor

Flowers and Green Chilis

Flowers and Green Chilis

Separating shallots from their casing

Separating shallots from their casing

Strange vegetables

Strange vegetables

A young boy wearing a traditional longyi sweeps in the early morning in front of green bananas

A young boy wearing a traditional longyi sweeps in the early morning in front of green bananas