journey to the north Day-3 meeting Ko Than Lwin

I met ko Than Lwin in Myitkyina
the first time, we dropped in at his clinic on Day-2, 25-Nov 2009 morning, after we finished shopping near central market and before dropping in at the bus terminal to buy tickets for the bus to Bhamo for the next day, and from where we continued on to Waing Maw to pick up my elder son aung ko oo, who was posted at the Waing Maw Hospital at the time (but now attending M. Med. Sc. Child Health at YCH, University of Medicine, I, Yangon) to visit the WarShaung dam, NaLanKha falls and Sidone to visit the British fort
we returned very late and arrived back at the hotel only after 9 pm
ko than lwin had come twice to the NanThidar to meet us after closing his clinic
I phoned him at once and he said he would come see me the next morning at the hotel before we checked out to go to the bus station
he came the next morning around 6:15 (it was still dark) and we had a good long talk until it was 7 am and I had to say goodbye to him as I have to finish my packing in time

ko than lwin gave me a present, a kachin longyi, and I was very moved by his gesture and consideration; we were not close while we attended medicine, yet, he was glad to see us and I was too to see him

he told me about ko Saw Aung (a surgeon) being in Bhamo where we were going (but ko Saw Aung was no longer there, he was already in Pathein)

also about Jimmy, who he met while he visited Yangon

he was contacted by an army personnel and informed that the Bogyoke wanted to meet him

ko than lwin did not go meet Jimmy

another day the same person returned and told him that the Bogyoke was now in front of the building and ko than lwin went down to meet him

Jimmy invited him (ko tl) to accompany him (J) to a dinner held for him (J)

ko soe win, colonel, was also present at the dinner too

ko than lwin also told me about Tauk Htun Gyi (a general practitioner), who had settled and practiced in Myitkyina, but had gone down to Mandalay for treatment of his illness without telling ko than lwin

it was only after THG’s death that ko TL heard about it

and it was only when ko TL told us that we got to know about it too

ko than lwin’s wife was in Mogaung for a case hearing (she is a lawyer) and ko than lwin’s sister was taking care of him

his 2 daughters are in Singapore

and his son is now an A.S. in Myitkyina hospital, the first posting

he was sent to Sg to his sisters but had returned and applied for service without ko than lwin’s knowledge


youngsters should have their own ideas about their lives and try to implement them, regardless of their parents’ wishes

as both my sons do

I had advised aung ko oo against becoming a doctor but he is attending M. Med Sc. Child Health course now

when my younger son, linn zaw win passed the grade 10, I also advised him to attend the Sg Polytechnics or the GTC, to become an engineer

but he has become a systems analyst after completing the University of Computer Sciences and the Post Graduate Diploma course at the Institute of System Sciences, NUS, Singapore

ko than lwin asked me to visit Myitkyina again

but told me not to come during the rainy season

as even the Mandalay Tharr / people find it too hot to bear

the sun is over the

during my short stay in Myitkyina, I wanted to meet U Soe Win, ex-MPRL, who was at the time working with the river maintenance group of the Asia World MyitHsone construction project and also my teacher, surgeon Lazum Yawhan, who, after retirement, has settled in Myitkyina

sayar U Yawhan taught me at the dissection room during my Anatomy days when he got transferred to teaching from a post far from Yangon

later, I met him again during my Part II days when he was attending M. Med. Sc. Surgery and stayed at the outhouse of my BaGyee’s Railways quarters on Prome road which (the group of Railways quarters was on the grounds on which the National Museum now stands)

sayar later got F.R.C.S. but I did not meet him again after my BaGyee retired and moved out of the quarters

our stay in Myitkyina was short, only 2 days, as we got there early on Day-1 due to the early flight and could visit the MyitHsone the same day

and as we toured till dark on Day-1 and till 9 pm on Day-2, there was no opportunity to visit my sayar U Yawhan or U Soe Win (I inquired for U Soe Win at the dam construction office on the way back from MyitHsone and also at the Asia World quarters in north Myitkyina before we were dropped off at the NanThida on Day-1, but he was not there; he was staying at a hotel near the jetty)

sayar U Yawhan is a simple man who loves his land and retired in Myitkyina

I wish there were more doctors like him in our country

and also that the government will allow more private doctors to specialize, to attend post-graduate studies so that the private health care will improve

we need proper private hospitals, not the current specialist in-patient treatment centers

maybe we will see change in the near future

as the privatization of the economy is now in full swing

more changes will hopefully come

after 2010

in the health and education sectors


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