Life on the Mekong and Other Rivers

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this blog, including strong statements in support of weinerdog-riding monkeys, are our own, and not those of the U.S. Department of State or the U.S. government.

Sunday, December 19, 2004

Laos on the Potomac

We'll try to keep an up to date telling of our life in Laos and travels around the region. Check back starting in March.

But to give you a little taste of the exciting things you will read about in the months to come...

I had toast for breakfast today and now I'm watching football.

Exciting, huh?

Sarah and Maren were visiting, and did their part too, carrying a new broom and fan-type thing.

The man in the foreground is a local Lao man who became a monk for the week to create good karma for his son, a marine who was killed in Iraq.

Most Lao men (and boys) become monks for at least a short period of time in their lives, whether to create merit (good karma) for their parents or other family members, or just to spend time studying and living according to the many precepts that monks have to follow.

Katherine and I at the Lao Buddhist Temple in Manassas, Virginia with one of our Lao language teachers. The Temple is basically a community center for the Lao community in the DC area, so we go to practice our atrocious Lao skills. Thankfully, the Lao are very nice people generally, and don't laugh in our face too often.

It was the Kathin Festival, wherein everyone takes the things given to the temple the past year and parades it around a pond. Katherine is carrying an umbrella and I have some sort of papier mache tower, the use of which I never figured out.