Vol.1

No.4

July - September 2002

Contents | A Letter to Our Reader | Once upon a time in Bago | Nine-Gems Ring | Khaung Cawi, to honour wives | Sea Gypsies | It's Good to Know | Cheroots | Traditional Chin House | Bandoola Boat | Events Calendar

Bandoola Boat

General Maha Bandoola was a great Myanmar patriot who repulsed the English in the First Anglo-Burman War of 1824. He fell to a cannon shot in Danubyu, a riverside town in the delta.Recently, a young Englishman paid tribute to our late hero by naming his gulf cutter after him, and sailing down the Ayeyarwaddy from Bhamaw to Yangon. Bhamaw used to be the main trading post on the overland route to China and ironically it was one of the reasons why the English invaded Myanmar in the first place: they wanted control of this lucrative route. Regardless of the antagonism of the past, the present is a time for the global villagers to help each other and live in peaceful communication.

Jo Sinfield left his job in NYC, had a gulf cutter built in Cape Town, transported it all the way to Yangon and Bhamaw via Mandalay, and sailed downthe river in March of this year. The sailboat is a 19 'Cape Gutter with 3 sails. He wanted to promote tourism in this land, he told journalists on his return, and that Myanmar with her diverse terrain of ice-capped mountains, wild rivers and deep jungles have a lot to offer anyone who wants to see the unspoilt world in its original state.

Jo Sinfield and his Cape Cutter "Bandoola"

"I was fascinated with the Ayeyarwaddy river from the time I read about it in an old copy of the Scottish Geographical Magazine," he said, "in which a writer named Henry Cadell had written that he was on the river in 1899, and in comparing it with the great rivers of the world, such as the Nile, the Mississippi, the Volga, the Colorado, the Ganges, and even the Amazon, thought the Ayeyarwaddy has a little, if not very much, of each of the good qualities of a great river while the others apparently had some, but not each and every virtue. The country and the river are so rich with history,"

On the way, he had passed through two gorges, stayed overnight at small villages, ate the local food, and twice spotted the famous Irrawaddy Dolphins. "I left Bhamaw on the 30th of March, thinking it would take 31 days to reach Yangon; in fact it took me 23 days, averaging 58km a day: 1331 km altogether from Bhamaw to Yangon."

He hopes that his trip, the first of its kind, will pave the way for other adventurers. He also hopes to return for trips down other big rivers such as the Chindwin.

Contents | A Letter to Our Reader | Once upon a time in Bago | Nine-Gems Ring | Khaung Cawi, to honour wives | Sea Gypsies | It's Good to Know | Cheroots | Traditional Chin House | Bandoola Boat | Events Calendar

Vol.1

No.4

July - September 2002