Bagan - One of the Archeological Wonders of Asia & One of Sam's Exotic Travels
At the time Europe was building cathedrals, Myanmar was building temples in Began - thousands of them. From the 11th - 13th century, Bagan was the cultural center of SE Asia. All good things must end, and Baganís days of glory ended when it was overrun by Chinese Mongols in 1284 and it appears the city was just deserted. The 2,200 + temples remaining today are testament to grander days and the remains are considered one of the most, if not the, important archeological sites in Asia.
Visiting Bagan reminded me of an old English fairy tale - that of Jack and the Beanstalk. In the story, Jack sells the family's cow for a handful of magic beans. On finding out, his mother tosses the beans out of the window. In this variation of the story, the Giant who lived in the clouds is the one who made the trade and his wife, angry with what he had done, tossed the beans through a hole in the cloud. Everywhere a bean landed below, a temple grew - thousands of them. Anyway, I may have an active imagination, but the layout of the temples is as random as if locations had been decided by some such occurrence.
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