Sa Win looks down the road from his house where he can no longer afford to build a home for his family
Sa Win (33) has big hopes for his family: he wants to be able to build them a new house.
Their current two-room home, which he lives in with his wife and daughter, is built on a thin sliver of land on a cliff edge that his parents own. For years, he's been talking about building a new one, but there is not enough space here. Around Kalaw, where the temperatures are cooler, land prices have been skyrocketing as wealthy military officials are racing to buy. Two years ago, this slice of land would have cost $500. Now, it's worth $1500.
Sa Win, who makes a living as a cook or a driver, earns $3-$5 per day, or about $90 per month. While this is slightly more than in previous years, it has barely kept up with inflation. With land prices rapidly increasing, he's not sure he’ll be able to catch up.
For many people, just existing day to day requires such effort, that things such as politics and the future of the country don't garner much attention. For Sa Win, he's focused on today: feeding his family, staying healthy, and building a house.
“The house is my dream”
That means that when it comes to a timeline, he has difficulties imagining and planning for the future.
"I don't know if we will be sick and have to pay for the hospital, or how work will be. I try to make a better life for the future, but does it work or not, I don't know. No one knows the future.”