Festival Season Begins

The countries of South East Asia share a time of year rich in traditional celebrations and time-honored festivals. Independence days, Buddhist holidays, anamist rituals…even Chinese New Year.

But I’m not talking about any of these. I’m referring to the February Travel Trilogy: Amy’s Birthday, Valentine’s Day and Chelsea’s Birthday. And let me assure you, we started it in style.

French colonization was not for naught: it provided Vientiane, Laos with an exciting cuisine infusion (I believe the correct term is a Frenchy Frenchitude) and with cheese, which we were desperately lacking ’cause you know we love us some cheese!

Other things to note about the Laotian capital: Asian, French and Communist influences have left the place a bit muddled. Grand Asian structures are guarded by cold Lenin-esque statues and the city’s attempt at a regal Arc d’Triumph was built from concrete donated by America for the purpose of building an airstrip.

At least they didn’t tamper with the cheese.

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