Beach bonfire, enchanting kids, quiet mountains
Trip Start Nov 06, 2006
54Trip End Jun 15, 2007
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We enjoy a refreshing longtail boat ride up the Nam Ou River to the small riverside village of
Muang Ngoi and settle into a bamboo bungalow with a hammock and nice sized deck overlooking the surrounding mountains and the river and valley below. The Lao people are so friendly here - lots of singing, children laughing and playing games in the streets.
A group of us decides to have a sunset fire by the river and a cheerful group of kids suddenly surrounds us and shows us their latest karate moves before they spontaneously join us in finding firewood
We share our fresh pineapple and a package of Oreos with the kids while we sip coffee, then stare in amazement as they start juggling red hot coals from the fire with their bare hands. After some initial embarrassment, they soon launch into a Lao song and get a big kick out of it when I start trying to sing along. From that point on we were best buds and they had fun getting me to say things I don't think farang are supposed to say. Their friendliness, innocence, and openness is so beautiful.
At an outside bar last night, some of the locals were playing guitar and singing songs. They laughed gently when they forgot the lyrics, and again I was struck by the quiet kindness they showed for everyone.
I find myself slowing down here, my voice becoming softer. Laos is a lovely place - a gentle reminder of the kindness at the heart of the human spirit.