Phayo, Franche-Compte, Elounda, Jum

A Match for Myanmar?

My heart goes out to straight as an arrow 17 year old John*. Already a dedicated member of Equality Myanmar, a much-needed human rights education organisation, he started working night shifts at our hotel a few days ago and volunteers for the organisation whenever he can. John tells us that his organisation is still small, about a hundred members in total, and that people are afraid to join, still afraid of the government, and the generals.

With bright eyes, he confides how it had been his childhood dream to study Law at Harvard. He explains that he developed a plan go to law school in Mandalay, but was forced to settle for Psychology because for now, he says defiantly, it’s still the Government who decides what you study.

Our late night talk is revealing, and John inspiring. It should be me asking him for advice! As it is, I tell him to keep learning languages, and by all and any means, to nurture his belief in a better future, for himself and his country.

*Name changed


8 Responses to A Match for Myanmar?

  1. October 28, 2013 at 08:06
    Peter Bracey says:

    A delightful story, delightfully told. I particularly liked the ‘soft glow’ that drew you in to the shop.
    I will be spending 3 weeks in Myanmar next year and in Yangon I will be staying near Kandawgyi Lake. Is there any chance you could give an address or directions to EG’s shop? I would love to visit.
    Also, on the invoice it shows ‘Delivery $135.00’. Delivery to where? and did EG arrange that?


    • Thanks for stopping by!
      I’ll pm you the whereabouts of the shop.
      “23d Feb Delivery “- just meant the guitar would be finished by then. (We picked it up on leaving Burma.) International deliveries are possible but presumably very expensive. The guitar incl. 2 custom abalone inlays (Rafa got to pick out the shell) and soft sleeve cost $135.- And a very nice guitar it is!

  2. Hi

    I have been trying to find the address of this luthier (Ko Cho). May I know his whereabouts?
    I have been trying to locate him since he last changed his address. I would love to purchase another of his guitar when I am back home in Myanmar.

    • Am updating my post with contact data. Unfortunately EG’s shop has moved from Kandawgyi Gardens and the new locale isn’t open yet, it’ll be somewhere near Sule Pagoda. I was able to call him. Garden offices across from where the shop used to be (near the huge golden ship) had a phone number. Not sure if the one on the card works.

  3. October 2, 2014 at 05:11
    Ian Hislop says:

    I am working with refugees to play and repair guitars in a refugee camp on the Thai Myanmar border. Id love to get in touch with guitar makers in Burma/ Myanmar; can you help with contact details?

  4. September 27, 2017 at 07:49
    Abraham Chen says:

    Dear sirs, I would like to learn more about the guitar industry in Myanmar, especially for the guitar manufacturers. Could you kindly refer some for me? Thank you in advance.

    Best regards,

    Abraham Chen

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