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Wednesday, March 28, 2007

OUR HIDDEN TREASURES: Vientiane, Laos







I spent almost a year and a half living in Vientiane; the capital and the largest city of the Lao People’s Democratic Republic. Yes, it is still a communist country and yes, communism is still alive and kicking! Take that!

Around 4 years ago, I remember myself searching the Internet with all information I can get about Laos – the enigma of Southeast Asia. How many people have actually been to Laos? -- Not too many.

There wasn’t much info about it on the net around that time. All they say is it’s a commie country and what’s all on the Internet are some typical tourist-come-on articles.

So, I packed my bag with a couple of shirts and jeans. Bought a plane ticket to fly from Bangkok to Vientiane and I was on my way. That was one of the most memorable adventure I ever took...

I immediately fell in love with the city. The people are genuine, the smiles are real. The atmosphere is down-to-earth. There were European restaurants, wine shops, delis and everything a westernized visitor would ever need with the exception of McDonald’s, gigantic shopping malls and alike. Everything’s perfect!


The pace of life in Laos is veeeery slow. But I never got bored at all. The city itself doesn't have much touristy-places to offer but you know what is Laos' best to offer? -- the people. I have made a lot of friends and acquaintances. Some speaks French fluently!


This is the land that the world has turned it's back upon... The country that the world has forgotten (or chose to forget). The Americans dropped more bombs here than Vietnam itself during the Vietnam War. Because the Americans thought the insurgents have taken refuge there. This is the most bombed country on the face of the earth! Laos still bears the scars up to now. You can see it on some of their buildings.

This is getting a bit dramatic for me now. LOL. But I really felt for the Lao people...honestly.

And here's the kicker... I was a multi-millionaire in Vientiane!



This is how much "kip" (Lao money) you can get for your $100! More than 1 million kip! Take that! (with a really huge wallet)

The street signs are also written in French! Take that!



There were only 2 places in Vientiane I eat out in my almost 2 years stay there. One of them is STICKY FINGERS. That groovy little restobar along Francois Nginn Rd. (just across Tai Pan Hotel) that serves heavenly food. I always had that baked chicken-breast with basil leaves sauce. Oh yeah, I can still taste it now! *eyes closed, biting lips*

That tangy and tasty baked chicken breast....






...the Fish&Chips will give you an orgasm. Guaranteed!


Sticky Fingers is owned and managed by 2 super-friendly young Aussie babes (and they're both hot too! Wooohoo!), I have to have a regression course done on me by a psychologist to remember their names…I’m really bad in remembering names but I never forget a…uh…Wait!...memories kicking in! …it’s Angela and the other that rhymes with BarneyMarney!!! Take that! Ha! Lovely babes!

Anyway, the resto is really relaxing, dim light, cozy chairs and spacious tables. I remember them putting some 2 or 3 tables outside on Friday & Saturday nights. The feel of those outdoor dining…huh….really cool! Good spot to do dudes and babes watching. Sticky Fingers is just a few steps away from the river quay road.

If ever anyone of you is in Vientiane, try this cool little restaurant. One of Vientiane’s highlight in city dining…worthy to be mentioned as SE Asia’s little treasures.


Although Laos is called the 'Land of a Million Elephants' -- NOT ONCE in my entire stay there have I seen just even a fingertip of one single elephant! None! **smirk*

COME TO LAOS: The Enigma of Southeast Asia.
So you can impress your friends by going to places they can't.




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2 Comments:

Chris said...

Yes yes! Vientiane rocks. And Luang Prabang and Vang Vien. Actually all of Laos.

Can't get enough of that country.

Have to book my next flight....

;-)


Cheers from Bali,

Chris

Life is what you make it!
http://www.nomad4ever.com

Tayla said...

I love Vientiane, been there last year and can't wait to go for the New Years in April. I will have to try Sticky Fingers. Thanks for the suggestion, I learn so much from your posts, it's kinda addicting lol :)

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