Sunday 25 January 2015

The Aunt's Quilt update

I'm quite behind with my appliqué blocks; to tell you the truth, I've only completed the first block. But I have decided to make all the pieced blocks in one go and here they are.

I have also made blocks for a charity quilt the "Shanghai quilters alumni" are putting together. We were all members of the Shanghai quilt group at one time or another.  Some lovely ladies in the US will collect all the blocks and put them together and another lovely lady with a longarm machine is going to quilt it.

I hope you are having a lovely weekend.
Vreni xx

Saturday 10 January 2015

Burmese Days

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and a good start into the new year. Our Christmas was low key as it was just the four of us. We had our traditional Christmas Eve dinner and gift exchange afterwards (as we do in Switzerland) and on Christmas day we went to our favorite hotel for brunch. On Boxing Day we left early for the airport to fly to Burma, or Myanmar as it's called now . What a beautiful country and people. After many years of brutal military dictatorship it looks like there are at long last some democratic reforms, although opinions differ whether the transition to democracy is really underway. I guess time will tell.

I will just let the pictures tell the story:

The famous Shwedagon Pagoda in Yangon, which  is undergoing substantial renovations at the moment, hence the covers and scaffolding  

 Bagan - a truly magical place -  located on the banks of the Irrawaddy River. It is home to the largest and densest concentration of Buddhist temples, pagodas, stupas and ruins in the world with many dating from the 11th and 12th centuries. 

 and at sun set

I love visiting fresh produce markets

and couldn't resist buying a big bag full of dried chilies.

 Traditional arts and crafts:
tapestry with gold threads and semi precious stones

 Hotel pool with ancient temples in the background  

Sun set on the Irrawaddy River

Another golden temple

Manaday, Kuthodaw Pagoda

U Bein bridge,
the iconic teak wood bridge, the oldest and longest in the world  

Next we visit Amarapura, an 18th century capital city, to see the monks lining up to receive their food and gifts from donors at the Mahagandhayon Monastery. Monks only eat twice a day, lunch being the last meal of the day. 

From Mandalay we flew to the Inle Lake and enjoyed being taken on several tours in one of those narrow motor boats.

Fishermen "ballet" 

 Houses on stilts

Kids coming home from school, on boats of course

floating gardens, where tomatoes, bitter gourds, flowers and more grow

rickety stairways and walkways, not so easy to navigate for people like us (or me I should say)

Visits to the hill tribes 

 We had a few amazing days on and around the lake and I would probably say, that it was the best part of our holiday. 

The last night we spend at the iconic Strand Hotel in Yangon colonial life as its finest.

I congratulate you if you are still reading, but it was hard to choose only a few pictures out of the 600 we took.

Happy weekend.
Vreni xx