Feb
19
2011

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Life in Vientiane

by Going Slowly

Vientiane feels more like a slightly large and modern village than a nation's capital. In spite of it's sizable (relatively speaking, here) population of two hundred some thousand inhabitants, the city retains that pleasant, poky vibe we've come to identify as iconically Laotian.

Rue Manthatourath Plaid Tourists on Blue Bicycles Paintings for Sale from Behind Paintings for Sale Department of Information And Culture in Vientiane Capital Lao Shrine & Pepsi Grilling Fish

There is, thankfully, not much to do here in terms of sites and attractions. Or maybe we just no longer feel the need to see all the wats and silk weaving factories and sprawling, crowded, colorful markets. We are content to get work done, go for walks along the river, eat crumbly, buttery pastries from French bakeries, and scarf down spicy enchiladas from the Mexican restaurant down the street.

Tara Tex-Mex Restaurant Chicken Enchilada at Tex- Mex Restaurant Dusty Fan Over Band

We've also been hanging out with our friends, Pete and Natasha, listening to stories of their motorcycle adventure, and having fun together before they head home.

Natasha! Pete Playing Foosball Tyler Playing Foosball

Unlike almost every other time we've parted ways, this time we don't know when we'll see them again. It will feel so strange to continue traveling in southeast Asia, knowing that our friends, who have become such a big part of our time here, are no longer in the same part of the world. We'll just have to plan a time to go see them!


Though it's the capital city of Laos, Vientiane isn't really big on nightlife, and most places are closed before 10PM. One evening, when looking for a midnight snack, we had to search high and low for somewhere open. We were about to give up when we stumbled upon what seemed to be the only bar open in the entire city. After buying a few roti crepes from the food seller stationed outside, we walked back to our fancy spa-like hotel and headed to bed.

Vientiane Building by Lamplight Riverside Hotel Lobby Riverside Hotel Lobby

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