Rumors of my demise exaggerated. We have been completely off the grid for two weeks in Myanmar (Burma) except for a few very busy days in Rangoon. Reports of this adventure coming soon, but since we returned last night to modern life in Thailand, I will post a few pictures to appease scolding/worried friends and show that in fact we were not taken hostage by any of the 12 (or is it 21?) insurgent armies fighting the government. We were just on a long walkabout to many Lisu villages to try to understand the profound changes of the past 15-20 years. My last experience in this part of the world was in 1985 and 1997. Though no doubt these images of recent weeks show people and circumstances that seem very far from modern or developed, there has been dramatic improvement in the material and political lives of Lisu and most others in Myanmar since the 80s and 90s. Yes, poverty, political oppression, and racial discrimination persist —
but past overwhelming hunger, paranoia, and government suppression of information and free thought have decreased significantly.
Stories to come, here are a few pictures that show some of the beauty of this country and of the Lisu people.