Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Memories of LAO PDR

I was watching a cooking program that was recorded in Lao PDR. I don't watch much cooking programs, but since I have been twice to Laos, it captivated my attention.

Before going to Laos, I didn't know about its existence. The first time I knew about this country was in Sweden. I was attending a training program, and some of my classmates were from Laos. Through the time we study together, we end up being very good friends. At the end of the training, I promised them that I will see them again in their country. In less than a year, we were having our first holidays in Laos.... that was 1996.

We arrived to a country that was living out of the modern way of life. It was very relaxed, and it seems the time has stopped...I could not believe what I was seeing....

In the capital, Vientiane, we walked every night on streets without lights or pavement....we never felt so safe... Nevertheless, not only we felt safe, but we felt welcome. Laotians are very kind, humble, respectful and friendly people. We traveled from Luang Prabang to Pakse. We visited every temple, enjoyed every local market, ate in every small restaurant, and our experience in every little town was indescribable.

The two situations that I remember the most happened in Luang Prabang (UNESCO World Heritage City). Luang Prabang is considered a holy city in Laos where 85% of the population is Theravada Buddhist. Every morning, Buddhist Monks walk around the city praying and receiving alms. Usually, what is given to them is fresh cooked rice for distributing to the poor, and eating among them. Every morning we woke up at around 5am, and on our knees we were praying and giving the rice to the Monks that were passing along. It was a very touching moment for our spirits. We were captured in the Buddhism spirituality that surrounded us before  the sunrise. Also, at that time, we were lucky enough to be the only tourist on that street. We felt blessed.....

The other situation is  an old lady that was always smiling us in a front of our hotel. According to our guide, she knew when tourist arrived to the hotel; therefore, she arrived early in the morning to sell her cooking to us. We could not say no to her. She was so kind, gentle and humble that we will always remember her. Everyday, we bought her what she had to offer us....we exchange our smiles and blessings....she made us very happy....
Our old lady selling us food in Luang Prabang 

We went back in 2000....Laos was the same as we remember. Of course....more tourism.....but the same gentle and humble people.....

Going back to the cooking program that I watched, in my next post I will prepare a Laotian dish....I hope you will enjoy it!

My blessings to my friends in Laos....


  1. Muy bonita historia, y qué lugar tan interesante. Has recorrido el mundo amiga!
    Espero ver pronto ese rico plato de Laos :D
    un abracito,

  2. Hilmar que bueno te gusto....tu que vives en Asia, entiended la calidez y espiritualidad de su gente.....Abrazos, Marcela