Laos is known for its quiet, calm atmosphere and people. It is a much poorer country than Thailand, which is obvious as soon you cross the border. The country is very rural and agricultural (mostly rice). Some Laotions grow crops and fish commercially but many live day to day harvesting or fishing for their daily family needs. Of course with the growing tourist industry some have found new careers as boat taxis, restaurant or guesthouse owners. But for most Laotions life has been pretty much the same for many generations.
More recent conveniences like motorbikes and boat motors have made life a little easier. And like almost everywhere in Asia it seems like most people have a cell phone. (people who live in the a tiny thatch hut with no water or electricity still have a cell phone?!)
Here, the other side of the river is Cambodia.
These kids were having a blast paying with this boat. No clothes and, at this moment, no worries. Truly kids being kids, no video games or tvs in sight.
Since Independence Laos has struggled politically and financially and is officially a communist country. Laos holds a record not to be proud of. It is the most bombed country in the world. During the Vietnam war Northern Laos was heavily bombed. According to official figures, the US dropped 2,093,100 tons of bombs on 580,944 sorties. The total cost was US$7.2 billion, or US$2 million a day for nine years. (wow)
These women are peeling yaro to dry for food.