After a few days in Vientiane, I’ve come to a conclusion. Through out my travels I’ve wanted to achieve a document with this blog and strive to take some quality pictures. And Laos has been some what of a battle for me. To be clear it’s a beautiful, peaceful country, and I think that’s been the struggle. Everything in Laos happens at a certain pace and you can’t do anything to alter that. Just as I had arrived in Luang Prabang, the pace is set for you, you can’t fight it, It’s the same here in Vientiane, the capital! Stop for a while, enjoy the pace, take time to sample the french bakeries, the excellent coffee, the Wats, but most of all take some time to sit by the Mekong river, where I find myself once again looking out across it.
The Mekong has followed me, or rather I have followed it, through, Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos and will continue to Thailand and also Myanmar. I spent an afternoon walking alongside in it Vientiane at the enforced pace and witness what a mecca it can be for a town or a city.
Here you will find exercise classes with music booming out within the peaceful landscape. Locals will just come and sit and gaze out at the perfect setting collecting their thoughts. And the river itself of course sustains many locals’ livelihoods, Fishing nets, fishing boats, entire families striding the river in search of the next meal. Youngsters hang out here, they arrive one by one on their motor bikes, maybe for a game of football,or just banter, musicians bring their guitars for some practise. And as always the entreneurial will try to sell you an ice cream, listen out for the melody on the approaching bike, or maybe a manicure is in order.
The river in many ways is the nerve centre for the city, for many they can’t live with out it, for others it’s the place to lose yourself for a while. One thing is for sure Laos will have you slow down here and take stock, what’s the rush? Theravada Buddhism comes into its own, your destiny is set, don’t fight it, jus go with the flow……..of the Mekong