This was in Laos. This was my favorite country of the four I visited. It was beutiful and peaceful. Almost nothing stayed open late, so everything was going on during the day. Only once in the week that I was there did I ever hear loud music blaring and even then, all the locals couldn't figure out what was going on. It was a very relaxing week and I got a chance to meet a couple of fun locals and some fun foreign travelers.
This was the kind of sunsets I had to put up with while I was there.
Laos only has about 5 million people in the entire country, so there aren't really any big cities. This is what a lot of the towns look like.
This girl was very cute. She kept trying to get money from me. We played around a little bit. I liked her facial expressions. Unfortunately, a lot of the locals think foreigners are rich, so they will come up to you asking for money. It gets a little annoying after a while.
The night sky was very nice here. I even got to see some stars. (I don't get that in Shenzhen - too much light pollution.)
A typical village. Almost all the huts are built on stilts. In some places, I understand why - it's because the huts are built in flood planes, but here, I don't understand why and no one could tell me. This village was on top of a hill.
After I took this picture, I showed the kids the picture on my camera. They thought it was the neatest thing. I usually showed people the picture after I took it - they always seemed to enjoy it. It's a good way to get to know the locals.
A village school. Not quite as nice as the school I am teaching in. The kids were excited to see us. They were all looking at the guy with the video camera.
The little girl on the right was so cute. She kept making faces at me.
Older siblings seem to take care of their younger siblings. The girl on the top left has her little brother strapped to her back. The kids basically spend the first year of their life strapped to the back of an older sibling of their mother and they just carry on with their work.
We did a kayaking tour down a river stopping at the villages and caves along with way. Here is a bridge we got to cross. This reminded me of the second Indiana Jones, but not as high of a fall.
Inside one of the caves. We actually went under the mountain, went in one side and came out the other. Had to wade through water a little deeper than a meter to make it across - it was quite cold too. This is kind of like in Lord of the Rings when they go through the Mines of Moria, but not nearly as exciting inside.
This is near where I stayed for a couple nights. When I saw it, it looked like someone had put a painting up on the horizon. It just didn't look real.
In Vientienne, this is a park with all sorts of statues.
Can you tell which one is me and which one is the statue?
The typical form of transportation. It's nice to see a helmet on at least one of them....
This is where I spent a lot of time - in very uncomfortable buses. I spent several days and many nights on these. It is amazing the kind of positions I have learned to sleep in.
I think this was the most exciting form of transportation I had. This was a speed boat that took me through Laos. It came equiped with crash helmets and everything. There were six people eack cramped into a half meter square box for 7 hours.
Here's what powered the boat. A Toyota 4 cylinder engine with no muffler. Needless to say, it was loud. (Lauren, thank your mother for giving me the ear plugs before I left.)
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