My last day in Burma. I arrive at the airport at 6 AM for my 8 AM flight. At security, a serious woman inspects my bag and asks me to open a sealed packet. Inside are three Burmese puppets. She briefly plays with one of the puppets, moving its arms and murmuring some words in Burmese. I stand there, amused. After politely returning the puppet to the packet, she resumes her serious demeanour for the next passenger.
After clearing immigration, I head for the waiting room. There aren't many people there, but I see some kids playing or crying. One asks for an ice cream early in the morning. All of the children gaze at the tiny planes with awe. These small planes are getting ready for their trips to the small cities in the north. I wish I were in one of those small planes, but I have to wait for a big one.
Finally, the big plane arrives. A bus drops us off at the plane, although we could have walked. Passengers turn back and wave goodbye to their loved ones who have come to see them off. I spot the security woman by the stairway. Our eyes meet for a second, I wave goodbye at her. Now its her turn to be amused, but she recovers quickly and returns the farewell along with a big smile. I want to stay.