For me, what makes a place special are the local inhabitants. I recently returned from a brief but amazing trip to Laos. The countryside was lush with flooded rice fields and glittering temples. The Mekong River is spectacular, the food is incredible and Beer Lao is refreshing. But its the beautiful Lao people, in my opinion, that are the country’s greatest asset.
They were among the most enchanting, friendly, hardworking and motivated people I’ve ever met. Here are some of the beautiful Lao people that I came across during my ten day visit in July 2011. (Double click to enlarge photo)
My volunteer tour guide in Vientiane. Originally from Luang Prabang, Seng spent 8 years in a monastery, acquiring a free education like many young boys from poor rural farming families who come to Vientiane for further education and employment. Seng is studying tourism and offered to take me around on his motorbike to practice his English. In spite of the numerous monsoonal downpours, we had a great time and I learned a lot about Lao culture through this young man. Good luck for your future Seng! I hope to meet you again one day!
Bouasavanh, Vientiane host extraordinaire! A friend of a dear friend, Boua incorporated me into her busy work schedule with a such friendly and easy going attitude as she wined and dined me, introduced me to her interesting friends, took me to the silver shop and assisted tremendously with my new enterprise. Here she is modelling some of the goods (opal jewellery)! Good luck with your new community development research consultancy project! Looking forward to meeting you again in the future!
This little girl was the sweetest and cutest little thing I’ve come across in a long while! Very enterprising as well. She sold these keychains to tourists on the weekends while attending school during the week, hoping to open her own shop up one day when she grows up.
And to my other new friends I made in Laos – Emi, Waan, Paul and Terry – amongst others, thank you for sharing a great time with me!