Vientiane, Laos

November 16, 2002

Weather: high of about 85ºF and sunny

We fly from Hanoi to Vientiane and the temperature isn't that much higher, but the sudden gain in humidity is killer.

There is something magical about the full moon in November.  We walk by the Mekong and find that there is a festival going on here.  We stop to watch the opera for a few scenes.  People duck in and out of seats throughout the performance.  Maybe because the performance isn't really about plot so people don't mind missing bits.  Or maybe because the majority of the audience is under 15 and lose interest rapidly.
Also part of the festival are these dart games where you can win a soda.  There were also some shrines set up and some mechanical puppets.
We didn't dedicate too much time to site-seeing in Laos since it was really just a layover on our flight to Thailand.  We do get to see a wat or two.  The guardians at the gate catch my eye.
More wat details.
Our friend Eric told us about the sterotypes of the countries:  The Thais grow the rice, the Cambodians watch the rice grow, and the Laotians listen to the rice grow.  We definitely found Laos to be a new experience in mellow.  
And the food!  It is fabulous to be so close to Thailand again.  The food is wonderful.

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