My personal highlight – by Isabella Stryj
My time in Laos was relatively short (six-and-a-half weeks), but still I experienced many great and adventurous moments! Nevertheless, there is one memory that makes me smile whenever I think of it:
Jule and I took Chanhpasong, Noy and Sackbong, three of the non-English teachers from Sikeud Secondary School on a day trip to Nam Ngum. Nam Ngum is a water reservoir located a 2-hour motorbike ride away north of Ban Sikeud. When we arrived at the boat terminal, Noy told me that he had never been on a boat before! When I asked him whether he was scared he said that he was very excited. Since the young teachers don’t have much money, we invited them on a boat cruise.
As we left the harbor the three young men were sitting opposite us and smiling from ear to ear like little boys. Seeing them so happy and joyful made me very happy. A moment I will definitely never forget.
We had lunch on the boat – fish, fried rice, morning glory, fried vegetables and of course beer Lao. The first stop was on a little island where we went tubing in the lake. What fun we had plunging in the water like little children! Fortunately all of them could swim.
Back on the boat we had our private party going with loud Lao music roaring from the speaker. Our captain – a 20-year old man – set course for a panorama platform, from which we had a great view over the lake with all its little islands and the dam.
The 3-hour boat trip did not cost much but gave us a joyful and memorable time.
Text & photos by: I. Stryj