A wise man once said....

A wise man once said
"When you talk, you are only repeating what you already know. But if you listen you may learn something new."
Dalai Lama

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

Laos


Quality not quantify is what I've always been told but in this case I've got both, good quality stuff and a lot of it.
So, a lot to write about. Visiting Laos. I thought another Land of Smiles. Well no its not! We had a few days there and enjoyed but the people were not as friendly as in Thailand, in fact I would go so far as to say they were generally miserable by comparison. Seemed very noticeable to us that few smiled. And I do not mean at us but in general. They, when chatting amongst themselves seemed to be far more serious and I did not see the usual Thai spontaneous smiles! Pity as it is an interesting place.
We went over for a 'visa run'. Reason being my work permit had been cancelled due to some error from when I last went overseas to Ha Noi last month. Anyway that was the reason for going to Laos on this occasion.
Getting there. First requirement was a visa. Available at the Consulate in Khon Kaen. Took all of 5 minutes. I timed it!!
Then on a bus to Vantienne. We drove to the boarder, go off and went through Thai immigration, got back on the bus and 100 meters up the road got out again for the Laos immigration. Then we were driven over the mighty Mekong River and on into Vantienne.

Khon Kaen to Vantienne is about 250 kilometers all up. This was done including the stops in about 4 hours at a cost of Baht 186 each. (That's about 4US$). Could not do that in a car!!!!


Well of course first things first. Food on arrival. Next to our hotel beautiful spit roasted chicken and Wanna jumped in to make her own 'Som Tam'. The food is basically identical to Issan food so for Wanna home from Home! Good start to the weekend.



We had a walk round and spotted a lady painting the "Ghost Houses'. I had always wondered how it got done. Also some nice old buildings and street scenes.Followed by a quick trip round a few temples. Interesting years ago people used to take your photo, develop it and come back an hour or two later to sell it to you. Now its digital and they carry a portable printer! Clever application of Technology.

As I said at the beginning of this posting we did a lot. Visited local markets and bought some silk.

Spotted a lovely old Triumph Motor Bike.


And last but not lease bought a Laos sandwich.

The sandwich is a beautiful fresh baguette, filled with pate, salad, meats and can only be described as delicious. Catch you soon.