Thursday, May 14, 2009

Village Life

PAKSE, Laos - Our tour yesterday included two villages.  The first village was Bane Kokphoung. As we walked up there was a couple of ladies surrounded by several children of varying ages. The women and 2 older girls where smoking on a "communal" pipe of local tobacco.  The village people don't speak Lao but rather their own language so our guide could not even communicate with them. Even with no words spoken, they still made us feel welcome. 

Our guide explained that their lives have improved since they are getting more money for the coffee that they grow and from the tours that come through. Our guide also told us that they don't give the village money but they do give school supplies, clothes, medicine, etc. for allowing us to come into the village.  The second village we went to was known for their weaving (that is where this picture was taken).  The children here and in the previous village have a way of melting your heart.  Most of the children in the villages have big smiles to greet you and a very playful way about them.  Makes you wish you could do something more to improve their situation....can be difficult at times.

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