After leaving the beaches of Dawai, I made my way to the last stop of my journey in Myanmar, and indeed Southeast Asia.
I had been backpacking for a year, I was tired of moving around more or less constantly, and was looking forward to returning home to see my family and stuff my face with roast dinners.
So, my mental attitude was probably a bit lacking by the time I reached Yangon. I was fed up of everything and I just desperately wanted to home. I looked at changing my flight to an earlier date because all I could think about every day was home, I want to go home!
Alas, it was not possible to bring my flight date forward and so I spent a few days in Yangon which was easily the biggest anti-climax to any trip I have ever done and one of my least favourite places.
It was a hot, dirty, smelly, polluted and very busy city. The people were not very friendly, eyeing us up uncomfortably when we walked around the streets. One of the girls in our group was groped, the other (I’m not sure why) kept getting punched in the arm by women glaring at her – it may have had something to do with them not liking the short length of her sleeves? Who knows.
All I know is, I couldn’t bloody wait to leave and I didn’t feel safe walking around Yangon after the sun went down. My enthusiasm for seeing any of the mediocre local sites was low, to say the least.
My last day and night, I checked into a nice hotel as a bit of a farewell treat to me. You know – nice comfy double bed, ordering room service, a lovely pool. What did it fucking do? It rained and rained and rained.
It was relentless, I couldn’t get the TV to work, the wifi kept dipping and there wasn’t really anyone else in the hotel.
I ordered room service which, for the price, really didn’t taste that great, and rejoiced when finally, at long last, it was time for me to get a taxi with a busted air con to the airport and get out of that god-forsaken city.
I had loved everywhere else in Myanmar, so really it was a shame to end on such a low note, but it is what it is. However, the sour taste of my last few days of such a fantastic trip did not stop there…
In typical bad-luck-comes-in-threes fashion, my flight was delayed, causing me to run for my connection and have a fight with a girl at security who was trying to complain about me pushing in. I arrived in Heathrow to discover that (unsurprisingly) they had lost my baggage due to the rush between the delayed and connecting flights.
At that point, all I could do was laugh, fill in a form, shrug it off and make peace with never seeing my bags again (To my shock, they did actually turn up several days later). My dad and brother got stuck in traffic en route to pick me up but got there eventually and all was well.
It wasn’t quite the epic ending I was hoping for after such an amazing trip, but life is certainly not perfect, and we must enjoy the ups and downs in equal measure. At the end of the day, I was home in one piece, with my family and friends and for a while, my next adventure would be just staying out for a little bit…