Burma survey 1971

Len Sellwood sent these photographs of Burma from when he was surveying there.

Len sent a few notes with the photographs:

“The Burmese village pictured – in the dry season these were rice farmers, in the Monsoon they were fishermen – note the houses are built on stilts.  The palms are toddy palms, from which they get palm wine.  One of my labourers could spot them miles away and always edged over to them ..”

“At the camp in Myo Chaung one of the soldiers caught a King Cobra and cut off its head as it was going into a hole.  Somewhere I photographed it against a levelling staff – it was over 14 ft without the head or hood.  Dennis Shearing skinned, salted and wrapped it up.  Not sure if he still has it!!”

“Leveling through cane fields was very hot and very dirty.”

“The village (river) of Myo Chaung we were supposed to survey for a Dam site, the evening before a full company of soldiers went out to secure the area (usual practice).  In less than an hour a tremendous fire fight erupted lasting some time with rifle, machine gun and mortar fire.  We deliberated for a couple of days and were in contact with FSK via HF radio, our decision was to level up the wider part of the river but not to go too deep into the jungle – we also settled on an extra £1 a day danger money.  Google Earth now shows a dam along the river.”

“The Reclining Buddha is the largest reclining Buddha in the world, we were told.”

“Burmese New Year (Water Festival) in Rangoon was great fun, as can be seen by the joy on people’s faces, wash away the sins of the old year and start the new one clean!”

A local market Al and Ian in mess tent At a Temple, note the gold leaf patches Barber Dave 1 using Helio mirrors Barber Dave 2 Camp at Wah Boat on the River Sitang Burmese village Camp - not sure which village Camp at Nyaunlay  Pin Climbing up to a hill top temple Dennis Shearing Skinning  a King Cobra Dennis skinning 14ft King Cobra Dennis tug of war Driving Through the main street ! Elephant day's work over Elephants Hauling  Teak logs Image at a Temple Instrument and Staff man Leveling Thro' cane fields Mahout (Elephant driver) Myo Chaung 1 Myo Chaung 2 Myo Chaung 3 Myo Chaung 4 Myo Chaung 5 Myo Chaung 6 Elephant Myo Chaung 7 Leveling Myo Chaung Camp Our transport Ox carts Oxcart with sugarcane Paddy fields before the monsoon Pwe (festival) in Nyaunlay Pin Rangoon Reclining Buddha at Pegu (Bagu now) Reclining Buddha Roadside Buddha Roadside Drink Stand 1 (Posh) Roadside Drink Stand 2 (not so posh) Sitang river boat Soldier with semi tame Civet cat Staff man with protection Think Mac is raising the antenna for the HF radio ToyotaToyota Water crossing Water festival 1 Burmese New Year Water Festival 2 Wash away all of last year Water Festival 3 Water Festival 4 Start the New Year clean Water Festival 5 Rangoon Water Festival 5a Water Festival 6 Water Festival 7 Water Festival 8 Water Festival 9 Water Festival 10 Water Festival 11 Way side Buddha

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