Laos

tammy_ftpoint@yahoo.com



DHL Credit Card Delivery


Kuang Si Falls


Wat Xieng Thong


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I was overjoyed when DHL arrived on my doorstep with my emergency credit card.  Imagine this, two young men show up on my doorstep on their scooter.  One is wearing a red DHL t-shirt.  Not quite the way it works back home.  I celebrated with ice cream, a massage, and a lush $4 meal.  FYI, it turned out my last credit card had eight fraud charges totaling $900.  Yes, the card is insured.

Just outside of Luang Prabang I visited a pretty waterfall, Kuang Si Falls.  There were multiple tiers and the formation looked like huge upside down petals from a flower. 

In Luang Prabang I visited numerous Wats Lao Buddhist Monasteries and I met several novice monks.  Most Laos boys under the age of 20 are a novice for at least 7-days.  As a novice there are 10 vows: no stealing, lying, killing, intoxication, sexual involvement, eating after noon, listening to music or dancing, wearing jewelry or perfume, sleeping on a bed higher than a monk, or accepting money for personal use.  If this sounds tough, monks have 227 vows!

Most of the novices want to practice their English.  I gave one an excel lesson on paper, for his upcoming exam.  Another had been a monk for 7-days and went to hand me a drink.  I had to remind him that he had to put it on the table (i.e., cannot hand things directly to a woman).

Next I headed up the Mekong River by boat.  In doing so, I was a bit off the normal tourist path and travel became unpredictable an adventure in itself.  I found out my two day trip up the river would take three.  There were a few other westerners who bought tickets and didn't realize the journey would take longer.  Later I found out we were on the slow slow boat and the slow boat went on a different day.

Personal space is non-existent on transportation, locals use each other as pillows as soon as the journey begins.  A few of us that got on the boat early had leg room, the rest of the boat was packed with groceries and supplies.  The locals are friendly and always offer me food. 

One of the westerners had a guitar and when the boat engine was stopped, we listed to him play.  He was excellent.  I especially liked, "Rhythm is Love" by Keziah Jones, which I'd never heard before.  He says the album "Blue Funk is a Fact", is quite good.

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