What lies behind gilt… in Myanmar

Whether it is a temple or a stupa or one of the  many (many!) gilded Buddhas in Myanmar, it is hard to believe that they started off  looking something like this —

Now,  I’m not too crazy about gilt (no matter the spelling), but these gleaming domes and statues took on a different glow once I glimpsed how this transformation sometimes takes place — one little square of gold leaf at a time… 

But lest you think I am romanticizing the whole business of devotion and ritual, let me just throw in this picture of a guy who may just be going through the motions… or just not understand the words on his T-shirt.

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