Garry McGivern’s September-2016 Update

Garry McGivern’s regular monthly update for September-2016. At the beginning of the month, I went for an eye test which went surprisingly well, considering all the other ailments I seem to have. With my sight not really much different to what it was 5 years ago and in fact the optician said that my eyes were very healthy!

Garrys new glasses
Garrys new glasses

A good sign I thought, maybe things are looking up on the health front. Two days later I was brought back down with bad toothache. And I had to have root canal treatment!

I also had my daughter’s wedding this month which went extremely well with everybody having a really good time. Especially the bride and groom. It was also such a proud moment for me to see my little girl getting married. Although I did feel very uncomfortable having to wear a suit all day! But I also enjoyed the day. And I think my speech although rather short was well received, which was just as well. I only finished writing it a few hours before the wedding!

Freedom
Vicky and Garry
Vicky and Garry

Now that the wedding is out of the way. I’ve got my passport back, and I’m allowed to go travel again. I’ve just got to wait for Vicky and Paul to come back from their honeymoon. And then I’m off literally! I’m picking them up from the airport early on the 4th of October. Then it’s a quick trip back to Bognor to swap over cars then they take me back to the airport to catch my flight to India!

My original plan for this trip was to cycle around the south of India and then back up to Kolkata. But after realising that I could now cross into Myanmar, I changed my plans and started to pursue that. Myanmar was one of the countries that I wanted to cross on my world cycle ride in 2011. But at the time, you weren’t allowed.

Indian street
Indian street

Although I’d already booked my flight to Mumbai (which wasn’t the ideal starting point for a trip to Myanmar). I still had enough time to cycle across India, cross into Myanmar and then cycle down to Thailand and fly home from Bangkok.

 

It’s Complicated

To enter Myanmar at the Moreh/Tamu crossing, which is the one I would use. I need an MTT permit, which I can obtain from Exotic Myanmar Travel for $80. Apparently, it takes about three weeks to get. So whilst my passport was away having my Indian Visa stamp put in, I started to make enquiries about getting the MTT permit. It was whilst making these enquiries that I discovered that Myanmar had changed the rules. You now had to leave by the same port that you entered. You could no longer leave by a different port. Not after crossing on the Tamu border crossing, anyway. After making some more enquiries with Mr Kyle at Exotic Myanmar Travel, the very kind man I’d been corresponding with. He confirmed that, yes, the rules had changed, and you could no longer enter at Tamu and leave by a different port. and to top it all, I’d have to pay another $80 for another MTT permit to exit at the Tamu/Moreh crossing!

Options

After once again not being able to cross into Myanmar, I’ve now decided to head up to Nepal and Kathmandu. A; because I like the sound of it. Especially when somebody asks me where I’m going, Kathmandu I can say. it just has a nice ring to it!

B; in the faint hope that the rules might change on entering and leaving Myanmar. I’d at least be heading in the right direction, for a while anyway. although I haven’t got a visa or permit for the country but their minor details I’d work those out on route!

And finally, C; I had a bet a few years ago with my good friends Dave and Helen to see who could cycle to Kathmandu first!

Chaotic Indian roads
Chaotic Indian roads
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