Announcement - Bamarlay's Diary

I am moving my blog to Myanmar Man's Diary.It has already passed the beta testing stage and now up and running. Please visit my new blog. For, I will be updating it with the excerpt from my new posts in Myanmar Man's Diary. Another blog I was invited to contribute to is Today in Myanmar, a website about Myanmar culture, custom, information, travel advice, life and anything about Myanmar. You can also visit the new blog. So far, I am the only one who regularly contribute to this blog while other friends are still writing their articles. Thank you for your support.

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Friday, May 23, 2008

Cyclone Nargis Destruction

Cyclone Nargis Destruction

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Email from a friend

The following is an email from a friend who actually visited the cyclone hit Bogalay in Irrawaddy delta of Myanmar.

Actually I havn't seen much at Bogalay as the Thidagu monestry is located at the entrance of Bogalay.
But it's not on the main road that we hv to go abt 15min towards the river.
The monestry is built on the bank of the river that they distribute all the materials with boats to the affected villeges that cannot be reached by cars.
The route is like Nyaung Done---Ma Au Bin---Kyeik Lat----Phyar Bone---Bo Ga Lay.
After we passed Kyeik Lat there are lines of people on both sides of the road hoping for some donations by passing by cars until we reach Bogalay.
I think there will be more than 10,000 people.
Those people previously lived in the paddy fields on the left and right side of the road.
Now their homes were destroyed and the fields were filled by water that it is not even possible to walk through.
So, they move to the road side and some of them could built small tents but some cannot that hv to stand or sleep in the bare land.
I saw 6,7 family members tightly sitting under a roof not larger than 4'x4' plastic sheet with 4 posts.
Most of their accomodations are not worth to call a tent, it's barely a shelter with a roof with 4 sticks.
I can't imeganine how they would live when there is rain.
Most of them are women and chilerens.
They are not begging for money but they are standing there with full of hope who will donate basic needs like food, water, clothes, etc...
I had a chance to ask one of them.
The man said they are ashame to stand and hopeing for donation while they are still storng and healthy.
He said they hv no choice cos the whole delta area biz is only farming.
Since all seeds for rain crops were destroyed and so no farm owner hire them again.
These people are hidden victims of the storm.
That means almost all the people in delta region going to be incomeless if we cannot support them to resume farming.
I am wondering how many days we still can donate to those people.
after donation ends, how they can live.
Some of them will become robbers, some will thieves, some will beggers, women become porstitutes, childrens will be trafficked and only minority will get a job in town areas.
They don't even know they should go to camps so they are not listed as victims.
There are still a lot of people like this around Ygn area like Hlaingthaya, South/North Dagon, Shwe Pauk Kan, Kun Chan Kone whose home and biz were destroyed.
It is not possible to rebuild their home and biz without effective help.
And you know I saw so many schools destoryed along the road and they are not repaired yet.
So how schools will reopen and even school reopen, who can go to school in such situation.
We cannot go further down frm Bogalay as it is dead end of the road.
We heard there are several camps opened by gov that we did not go there.
Thidagu sayadaw is trying to send those helps to the areas that no gov help can reach.
I believe there are still many people surrounded by water who still can't escape who will be dying if no supply reach them.
I saw some victims living near Thidaku camp said water level is higher than the coconut trees and coconut trees are the highest point they can climb up.
And there's very high tide coming like a big wave drag drowning all the people.
You can hardly find a man who still left his all family members.
As you know all villeges are built along the river and costal line, you can imaging how those people die smimilar like a tsunami.
I regret that I didn't take my camera with me.
Ok, I am planning to donate arnd the Ygn region and so will post you more abt the worst lifes on the earth.
If possible pls post above situation on yr blog or anywhere else on the web.
You can edit or re-write as you like.
I would like the world know that the problem is not jst simply dying by the tide but there is much much bigger hidden problems ahead concerning with millions of people.

I made a donation of 15,000 baht (535,000 kyats in real money) through him to the cyclone hit victims of Irrawaddy. Please do whatever you can to help our people in the Irrawaddy delta region in Myanmar.

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Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Myanmar starts National Mourning today

Burmese Buddhists pray at Shwedagon Pagoda in Rangoon on Buddha's birthday, May 19. (Photo: Reuters)
Burmese Buddhists pray at Shwedagon Pagoda in Rangoon on Buddha's birthday, May 19. (Photo: Reuters)

Myanmar starts National Mourning for the victims of Cyclone Nargis today. The three days mourning starts from 9 AM today until 22 May. Flags were lowered to half mast all over the country. In Yangon, shops are still open. Thousands of worshippers crowd Yangon's holiest pagoda to pray for victims of the cyclone. Worshippers chanted prayers, burned incense and released birds around the grounds of the temple. The pagoda complex was closed for five days for repairs, but was open again on Tuesday. Meanwhile, Myanmar government has allowed the ASEAN led relief operation to do relief efforts in Irrawaddy delta region, during the summit in Simgapore. According to Myanmar foreign minister U Nyan Win, the loss due to Cyclone Nargis is estimated to be around ten billion US dollars.

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Sunday, May 18, 2008

Translation from Nyi Lynn Seck Blog

The following is the translation from Myanmar blogger Nyi Lynn Seck about Cyclone Nargis.

"What we knew was that the wind speed would be around 50 miles per hour. When flood water came, all our family ran to upstairs. During that time, wind was also blowing quite rough, and water waves were hitting the house. Our house's pillars were quite large. Even such large pillars became loose. When water reached the upper floor, I pushed my two younger sisters above the ceiling beams. It was very dark and I sould not see anything properly. I suddenly saw mother was flushed way with a wave from father's hand. When I tried to grab my mother, she shouted and pushed me back. When I turned my head to my two sisters, they were gone. A wave hit me and I was thrown out into the water. I took off all the clothes and swam my best. I could not see anything. Finally, I was so depressed and thought I would die soon. I prayed for Lord Buddha. Suddenly, I saw two pieces of wood, and I grabbed hold of them. I flowed with the current until I reached the top branches of the tree. I grabbed hold of the branches and waited until the water was down. I don't know whether my survival was luck or misfortune. I lost my mother, my grand mother, two uncles, my two younger sisters and my aunty. Only me and my father left"

"Some people were trying to scavenge valuables from the corpses. When I rowed my boat near the river bank to dock, I found grandma's corpse. Her earings, neckace, bracelets were all gone. Her corpse was left there because her hair was tangled with a tree branch. I don't want to say anything about taking valuables, but at least they should have cut the hair and put the corpse onto the river bank. When I saw this, I cried."

"My two sons and my younger brother went to a near by village for shin-pyu (novice ceremony). Their aunties and uncles came to their shin-pyu. When in the evening the wind blew strong, my two sisters went back home despite our protests. I never heard of them since then. There were twelve monks at the monastry. Ten passed away. They were crushed under the collapsed building. Their corpses were still there. I was so lucky to be alive. I climbed up the coconut tree and stayed there."

I cannot describe all the stories I heard. There are many members in each family in the villages. At least six members in every family. Generally, only one out of five escaped. Whenever they see corpses, sadness is apparent in their faces. They don't cry as they were seasoned men, but they cannot hide their sorrow on their faces. Most of the dead were women. Many suggested they died not because of drowning, but because of injury during flooding. In some families, only old man and yound grandchild escaped. They said they don't even want to think about it. Villages were destroyed to the point that it was really difficult to find own's land. Many people have experience with storm but they didn't think this storm would be this strong, so they didn't take any precaution. That is one reason there were many casualties. Most are honest farmers. I looked up towards heaven and wondered why such misfortune hit these poor innocent people. When I climbed to the boat pier, I saw a corpse of a young child, wearing a rubber band on his wrist. Thousands of lives, thousands of innocent people, lost in the water, lost on the land.

When I read Nyi Lynn Seck's article, I really wanted to cry. It really made me feel sad. You can read all about his experience and his aid work to the cyclone victims at The photos he took of Myanmar cyclone victims in Irrawaddy are here at

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Saturday, May 17, 2008

Cyclone Nargis destrution - My Home

Here are some photos of my house and around after cyclone Nargis in Yangon, Myanmar.

Living room during cyclone Nargis when the roof was blown off
Living room during Cyclone Nargis, Yangon, Myanmar
Covering with whatever available during Cyclone Nargis when the roof was blown off.
Covering with umbrellas in the bed room during Cyclone Nargis, Yangon, Myanmar
Ceiling blown off after the cyclone
Aftermath of Cyclone Nargis, Yangon, Myanmar
Blown off ware house
Blown off wear house
Satellite dish blown off of the roof
Satellite dish blown off
Finally have to remove all the satellite dishes from the roof
Finally have to remove all the satellite dishes
The whole street is blocked
The whole street is blocked
Where should I go?
Where should I go?

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Myanmar Cyclone death toll rising dramatically

Death toll in Myanmar rises dramatically, the official New Light of myanmar announced on 17 May 2008. The official death toll from the official New Light of Myanmar are as follows:

Death: 77738
Missing: 55917
Injury: 19359

Source: New Light of Myanmar May 17 2008

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Thursday, May 15, 2008

Latest Casualty from Cyclone Nargis in Myanmar

Here is the official casualty from Cyclone Nargis in Myanmar as of 15 May 2008.

Death: 38,491
Missing: 27,838

Source: New Light of Myanmar

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

UN says another cyclone forming in Myanmar area

UN says another cyclone is forming in the Bay of Bengal near Irrawaddy Delta, and it is heading towards Myanmar.

The Hawaii-based Joint Typhoon Warning Center, a US government agency that contributes data to the United Nations, said there is a good chance that "a significant tropical cyclone" will form within the next 24 hours and head across the Irrawaddy delta area.

Prof. Johnny Chan, a tropical cyclone expert with City University of Hong Kong, said the new cyclone will not be as severe as Nargis because it is already close to land, and cyclones need to be over sea to gain full strength.

"There will be a lot of rain but the winds will not be as strong," he told The Associated Press.


Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Cyclone Death Toll rising

Latest death toll from Myanmar Cyclone Nargis has rising, according to official New Light of Myanmar. Latest official figures are as follows:

Death: 31,938
Missing: 29,770
Injury: 1,403

Source: New Light of Myanmar (As of 13/05/08)

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Saturday, May 10, 2008

Latest news from my home

I could talk with my family in Yangon, Myanmar today. The internet is up and running now, and my father could use the internet at an internet cafe near our house. The line seems to be ok as we could use skype to talk to each other. Some roofs of our apartment building was damaged and we have to replace around 25 metal sheets. We also had to remove all the satellite dishes installed above our roof. The electricity and land line phones are still cut off, but municipal water is coming back. We had to buy a new electric generator (2 horse power) to pump water up to 4th floor. (Our house is in 4th floor). Apart from that, there is no serious damage to our house or near by houses. And there is no death in our township in Yangon.

On that day, wind was blowing too strong and water was coming in to our house. My grand ma's room and my sister's room were damaged (the roofs) bu Pa's room was still OK, so they have to sleep in Pa's room while Pa had to moved to the living room. The children were really scared and running around the house. The whole night was a hell.

After the cyclone, the prices of commodities rise up to 50% of that before the cyclone, but now stabilize to around 20% above the pre-cyclone level. Petrol price is now 5,000 kyats a gallon (around 4 US dollars).

Most of the main roads have been cleared of the debris and fallen trees. Electricity is coming back in a few area but most places are still without electricity. Municipal water is coming back.

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Friday, May 09, 2008

Email from Myanmar

The following is an email I got from my friend in Myanmar who is currently working as a doctor in Yangon General Hospital.

"All houses ' roofs are gone. Family is fine. Mum got the wound in her hand. Yangon house lost some roof, i 've repaired just for live. Don't worry. Twnate houses in Ohnpinsu, that can live. The other houses' roof gone. Khunchankone house are now repairing, but it'is not easy. Very expensive. Twantay loss 50% overall, Our fish ponds are OK. Kunchankone loss 80%, many live lost cos of sea water. at least 600 live. Taungbatpine damaged severly. Our relatives are still alive. I'm helping in hospital, many many patient.Someday i have to trip to Ayeyarwadi division for medic."

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Cyclone Nargis aftermath in Myanmar - tragic photos

People fleeing away from the flooded villages


Dead bodies still lying in the flooded fields

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Thursday, May 08, 2008

Myanmar Blogger Nyi Lynn Seck up and running again

Myanmar blogger Nyi Lynn Seck has updated his blog today. I am not sure whether internet in Myanmar is up and running or not. He said in his blog that the destruction and death toll on Myanmar after cyclone is rising with not enough aid for the people. He promised to distribute the doantions (money or material) to those from Irrawaddy division. You can send the aid money and materials to him at the following address.

(Nyi Lynn Seck)

Manager, Online Division
Inforithm-Maze Company
၉/မထလ(ႏိုင္) ၁၆၉၀၆၅ (ID Card Number: 12/MaHtaLa(Naing) 169065
Address: Bld A-3-1, 1103, Myanma Goan Yi Condo, Mingalartaungnyunt Township, Yangon.
Ph: 09 80 20413

Disclaimer: I am no way in any connection with Nyi Lynn Seck and cannot bear any responsible for any loss or misuse of your donaions to Nyi Lynn Seck. I am only describing this information to those outside Myanmar because I want to help Myanmar people.

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Death Toll from Cyclone Nargis

According to Myanmar Official Newspaper "New Light of Myanmar" on 8th May, here is the official figure of casualties from Cyclone Nargis.

Death: 22980
Injury: 1383
Lost: 42119

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Myanmar coastline changes after Cyclone Nar

Myanmar Coastline after Cyclone Nargis
Myanmar Coastline changes after Cyclone Nargis

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Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Sad day for Myanmar (Burma)

Yangon Myanmar Cyclone Nargis
People lining up for water in Yangon

This is indeed a very sad moment for all Myanmar people. The death toll from Cyclone Nargis rises to more than 22,000 and many thousands are still missing. Millions of people were made homeless with no assess to clean water or food. Many more will die because of infectious diseases. Nearly half the Burmese (Myanmar) population are suffering. I am here in Thailand, in a safe place, but I feel very sad for all those people suffering. They are my people and it hurts me so much. Why our Burmese people have to suffer such kind of hardship? Why us? It is a really hard question to answer. We, all Burmese, should help our own people as much as we could. Any help would be useful for our people. Don't wait. Don't hesitate. Try to find out whatever we could do to help our own people.
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Cyclone Nargis

I tried to call my home in Yangon since Saturday morning. Until Friday evening, I could still call my home. My father told me that the wind was blowing heavily, but the situation was still OK. The next morning when I tried to call my home, the lines are already down. I tried the whole saturday but I could not get through. Sunday morning, still no phone contact. Finally, I tried to call my friend who has a mobile phone. He said the situation was really bad. He promised me to go and see my family. Yesterday, I called him again, and he said my family was OK. My flat was in the top floor, so I was quite worried for them. There are two or three roofs blown away, and all the satellite dishes destroyed, but apart from that, the building is intact. Water was pouring into the house and my family had to moved things into the rooms where it was dry.

Electricity was cut off but, thanks to one of our neighbours who has an electric generator, we could pump water to our room. For those without any generator, water is a big problem. There is still no relief effort from the government agencies, and people are cleaning the roads by themselves.

Prices of food had shoot up and the price of building materials has doubled. One bottle of water (25 liter) is said to be 1000 kyats, and a liter of drinking water is said to be 600 kyats. Even then, people cannot buy as much as they like, as the shop keepers sell one bottle per person.

A few shops open and many shoppers are trying to buy things. Some super markets opened today, and they have to limit the number of shoppers into the supermarket.

My friend said it would be very difficult to restore the city into its previous condition, especially electricity and telecommunication as it will cost millions of dollars to repair all the infrastructure.

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More photos of Cyclone Nargis in Yangon

Cyclone Nargis in Yangon Myanmar
Cyclone Nargis in Yangon Myanmar
Cyclone Nargis in Yangon Myanmar
Cyclone Nargis in Yangon Myanmar
Cyclone Nargis in Yangon Myanmar

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Cyclone Nargis flood assessment for Irrawaddy Division Myanmar

Flood assessment map of Laputta-Bogale
Cyclone Nargis flood assessment map Myanmar
Flood assessment map of Irrawaddy Division
Cyclone Nargis flood assessment map Myanmar

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Monday, May 05, 2008

Cyclone Nargis Video in Yangon Myanmar - Aljazeera

This one is from ALjazeera TV.

Cyclone Nargis Video in Yangon Myanmar

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Yangon Cyclone Nargis Photos

Here are a few photos of Cyclone Nargis in Yangon.

Cyclone Nargis Yangon
Yangon after Cyclone Nargis
Cyclone Nargis Yangon
Yangon after Cyclone Nargis
Cyclone Nargis Yangon
Yangon after Cyclone Nargis
Cyclone Nargis Yangon
Fallen down electric ole
Yangon after Cyclone Nargis
Tree uprooted in Yangon after Cyclone Nargis

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Saturday, May 03, 2008

Cyclone Nargis Hit Yangon, Myanmar's capital

Cyclone Nargis
Cyclone Nargis
Cyclone Nargis
Cyclone Nargis Satellite photo

Cyclone Nargis hit Myanmar's former capital Yangon (Rangoon) early this morning, causing heavy destruction and devastation. The cyclone Nargis, a category 3 cyclone, passed through Irrawaddy (Ayarwaddy) delta area and Yangon, this morning. According to official announcement, the wind blew at more than 150 km per hour at its peak. Many roofs are blown away, and many trees uprooted. The official MRTV television and radio stations as well as City FM radio station were off for a few hours. The electricity is cut off and phone lines were also cut off. The internet is also down, and mobile phones become difficult to connect. Only three causalities have been reported so far.

Myanmar authority has delcared state of emergency in five states and divisions hit by the cyclone - Irrawaddy, Yangon, Pegu, Mon State and Karen State.

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Myanmar Astrology

If you are a fan of Myanmar (Burmese) astrology, this is a good starting point for you. Not only you could see what your future is, you can also learn Myanmar astrology at this site. The site has extensive articles on Myanmar traditional astrology. Some of the articles are quite indepth. I believe all Myanmar astrology lovers will love this site very much. Check it out at Myanmar Astrology.

Check your Internet Broadband Connection Speed

If you want to know whether the connection speed your internet broadband service provider promised is correct or not, you can check it here at Broadband Speed test. The website automatically decides where you live and suggest the server for you to test. Just click the suggested server and the program will test the connection speed. It takes just a few seconds. It test both the upload and the download speeds, and display the answer. For me, my upload speed is always around 750 kbps while my download speed is always around half my upload speed, that is, around 400 – 450 kbps. What my internet service provider promises is 1.5 mbps for download and 512 kbps for upload. So, while the upload speed is not much different, the download speed is only half what they promised. I think it also depends on the internet usage at the time of my test. Let me know if your speed is the same as what your service provider promised.

My Speed Test result
My Speed Test Result


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