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Friday, December 6: Day 228 – Bombs Away

I wore a winter hat to bed and woke up with a severe case of bed head. Saylom said that I looked like a rooster! I wore my hat during the day as well to cover up this mess. The night was freezing. In the middle of the night, I ventured out from the hut alone to the bathroom and saw a fresh bloody rat. I was not freaked out but was more concerned about the animal that...

Thursday, December 5: Day 227 – Prey Tell

Last night was very cold but our hosts gave us extra blankets. We had been given the choice of a king or twins. Rob wanted twins because he sleeps with a covers stealer. I thought the king would be best so that we could serve as heaters for each other. Twins won out!!! We are preparing for a overnight on the river so I KNOW that I will need warmer clothes this...

Wednesday, December 4: Day 226 – What Luck!

We leave our rustic Riverside cabin in Nong Khiaw to travel further north to Muang Hiam. Saylom has planned some interesting stops along the way. The Pha Thok caves housed many Lao during the war. There are many caves and waterfalls in Laos. When the country was under constant bombing, the locals would be in their caves during the day and venture out at night to farm...

Tuesday, December 3: Day 225 – Apocalypse Now

We were supposed to leave this morning on a boat along the Nam Ou. Nam means river. China has built a dam in Laos, and several days ago they shut the dam to test it. Here is a picture of the “river” today. The Lao government has allowed China to build here to give them much needed electricity. The rivers are the lifeblood of this mountainous country...

Monday, December 2: Day 224 – Papermaking

Kop Jai Lai Lai means Thank you very much. There is a bamboo bridge that is taken down before it gets washed away during the rainy monsoon season in June and July. It has just been reconstructed and ready for foot traffic in October. We decide to go across it and eat a meal at the Blue Lagoon. How unusual to see an insect menu. (Saylom says that the Lao eat...

Sunday, December 1: Day 223: Saving Laos

Today we attend the Nongkhan Church in Luang Prabang. I love walking to church. This pedestrian bridge over the river was a little rickety but it made the spiritual journey even more special. The service is not in English. There are about 100 people. They are very friendly and welcomed us to worship. The words were on the screen in Sanskrit, but occasionally a few...

Saturday, November 30: Day 222 – Alms Giving

The population of Laos is seven million. The population of Laos before the Vietnam (American) War was 2.5 million. After the war, it was 1.3 million. Population is growing. Vientiane is the capital of Laos. Laos is 80% mountainous, 15% flat farm land and 5% rivers. The mountains have mining potential, but it is too difficult to mine. The elephant was very useful in...

Friday, November 29: Day 221 – Clubbing

Here is something you don’t see every day. It is a clear night in Cambodia and we see three planets. Saturn in red, Venus in yellow and Jupiter in purple. I was really in need of a haircut. I have thick straight hair so the Asian hairdressers know what they are doing when it comes to that! Narak of Narak Inside Beauty was very meticulous. He wet my hair with a...

Wednesday, November 27: Day 219 – Slow Motion

Sinam showed us how to do slow motion on our cameras. I never really understood why you needed to use slow motion but there was a butterfly with brown wings when closed but a beautiful color of purple in flight. Sinam got a great shot. I was impressed. I tried it out today on this large buzzing insect. He and his buddy were hitting against our tent this morning. They...

Thursday, November 28: Day 220 – Unconventional Thanksgiving

Today is Thanksgiving Day in the United States of America also known as Woman’s Slavery Day!! I never understood why women had to spend the whole day in the kitchen cooking this enormous bird that didn’t fit on any platter in the house. And the lady brings the perfectly browned turkey (if she’s lucky) to all the assembled carnivores salivating at...