Breakfast was delicious. I regret not eating more. There was a noodle salad bar that I attacked. The noodle salad is very specific to Myanmar and I’m so glad I could try it out.

Our next stop was the city of Lashio. Our drive through the city of Mandalay was so rewarding. It was the first day if the water festival and there was so much festive fervour in the air. Almost electric. Loud music, water fights and dancing. What’s not to love? We made a quick stop at a Stupa near the palace. I couldn’t go in
because true to form, I picked the wrong day to wear shorts. But it was really beautiful even from the outside.

Around 100 km from Mandalay the pajero started acting up. It was time to find a mechanic. These cars are our lifeline’s for the next two months so it’s imperative that we make sure they’re in good shape. Alas, none of the car repair shops were open because of the festival. Big problem. Finally we found a pajero backing out of a gate. Dad ran up to the driver and said “Me pajero, you pajero… Where’s your mechanic?” The helpful old man escorted us to his mechanic which was unfortunately closed too. He didn’t stop there though. Motioning for us to follow him, he led us to another mechanic. He was there!

One look at the car and he said we’d blown a gasket and some other mechanical hoo haa I really don’t remember. To be honest, this entire day is blurry in my mind because I wasn’t feeling too well and so I was in and out of sleep all day long.

The ordeal with the mechanic lasted around six hours. There was no way we could make it to Lashio on time. We had to stay where we were and push on to the border city of Muse the next day. Luckily, the town we were in had many reports and hotels. Unfortunately, since it was festival time, all of them were booked. ALL. Water water everywhere and not a drop to drink. I just wanted to lie down somewhere. Anywhere. It had been a long day and I was in bad shape. The only place that was available was this cheesy sleazy motel with some serious retro vibes. The Dahlia Motel. But there was free Wi-Fi so why the heck not? (Check out the video of the cheesy motel walk through on our facebook page!)

I just remember falling asleep. Maybe I ate dinner. I’m not sure.