Bill Carey’s Southeast Asian Trip of a Lifetime


Thanks to the unique Trip of a Lifetime benefit, Arthrex employees travel all over the world to celebrate their milestone years of service. This company-funded trip also comes with an extra week of PTO.  

Engineering Systems Manager Bill Carey recently returned from his third Trip of a Lifetime. He shared: 

“My wife Amanda and I took a two-week trip to Myanmar (formerly Burma) for my 15 Years of Service. We had previously traveled to Peru for my five-year trip and Bhutan for my ten-year. We chose Myanmar because it was one of the few countries in Asia we hadn’t visited and it’s relatively ‘un-westernized,’ so we knew we would get to experience something very unique.


We started in Mandalay, Myanmar, where we visited several sites including temples, markets and a monastery. Mandalay is home to many craftsmen who produce traditional lacquerware, bronze casting and stone carvings (mostly images of Buddha). They also produce gold leaf (for use in temple decoration) and sell gemstones from the mountains north of the city.

We took a 10-hour cruise down the Irrawaddy river to Bagan, an ancient capital containing approximately 4,000 stupas (dome-shaped Buddhist commemorative monuments), some dating back to the first millennium AD.

We visited an elephant sanctuary in the Shan State where retired elephants are cared for. We then took a six-hour trip across Inle Lake where the residents live in stilt villages and we observed fishermen using traditional techniques to catch fish.


BillTOLAt the far end of the lake, we visited the famous Kayan Lahwi women. Beginning from a young age, heavy brass rings are placed around their necks, stacking higher gradually and giving the appearance of elongating their necks as they grew. The practice is largely discontinued among younger people, but some of the older women retain this tradition.

We ended our trip in Yangon (Rangoon), an interesting port city dating back to the British Colonial era of the 1890s.

It was a fascinating trip to a country that is just emerging into the modern world after many decades in isolation. The people were very warm and welcoming and the scenery was stunning. It was fascinating to meet people who have lived through so many years of struggle, yet remain open, friendly and optimistic about their future.

We have always loved to travel, and the opportunity to take such fantastic trips with Arthrex’s help reminds us of how much beauty there is in the world and how many wonderful people you can meet in the most remote of places.”

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Bill Bill

Category: Company Culture