As the plane landed with a bump, and soon I found myself surrounded by pesky taxi drivers in the seemingly never-ending drizzle, my heart didn’t simply sink, it dropped like a rock.
What on earth am I doing here, why didn’t I stay with my Thai family, didn’t I try to apply for my old job, why didn’t I just choose a completely different life, why do I have to be here again, why did a person I trusted screw up my luggage problems. It’s all so unfair.
I never really liked Yangon but I put up with it for the job. And now that I’m allowed to feel what I want, and there is no need to keep strong, all sorts of emotions hit me like gale force winds.
I’ve always admired it as a resilient, cheerful city. I’ve always appreciated the calm, friendly people with their open faces and helpful manners. I’ve always smiled passing by the little cafes where men sit down for a chat and tea in the evenings, the young lads playing football in the narrow lanes, the colourful little markets selling everything from thousands of nuts and bolts to frilly pink baby clothes (sorry my pics are mostly food).
It has loads of character and it’s so easy to get by and get things done and go places. It’s familiar and safe enough, and at this point, that helps. None of those challenges of India.
But I always hated living here, from the very first day until the very last one, and I am not even sure why. I was always very lonely and very sad here, always longing to be somewhere else. But it was me, not the city.
Having said this all, knowing that I’m out of here soon helps. Today I was happy taking photos, I really enjoyed familiar sights, including echoes and bits and pieces of a tame and cleaner version of India, and I am excited about meeting old friends. But that’s it. A very ambivalent return that could still go either way.