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Published: December 3rd 2006
Derek protects the meek
Derek tries to encourage the colouring mob to let this shy little guy get in on the colouring action
A great day was had, today! It was nice to be able to sleep without setting alarms last night, because we were pretty run down. Our beds were comfy and we all slept well. After a tasty breakfast of baguettes and jam (and a fruit salad for Derek that included, *gasp* APPLES! He didn't even recognize them at first, lol) we wandered around town with the sole aim of exploring. Before long, however, we realized that Luang Prabang is quite a hot place during the day! Too hot, we decided. You just can't really do anything when it's that hot out. Ohhh well. By sticking mostly to the shade we made it OK.
We found the Red Cross, and we're going back tomorrow to give blood (the blood donation part was closed today because it was Sunday). We also went to the museum, which I immensly enjoyed. It was the formal royal palace of the Laos Royal Family, and many artifacts are on display there. Unfortunately, it wasn't as informative as I would have hoped about Laos history. If I have time (which I kind of doubt) I might try to go to the small public library here and do
The Colouring Mob
I distinctly remembering hearing shouts of Finding Nemo-like seagull cries of "Mine! Mine! Mine!" Maybe my mind was playing tricks on me...
a quick read up on the true history of this nation, because I'm rather confused. Regardless of it's history, though, we LOVE it here more than ever. It seriously is so beautiful, and the people are really nice.
The best part of the day was the two hours we spent at a drop in play center for local children run by Big Brother Mouse, a small company here the creates and publishes Laos children's books and runs a literacy campaign. Derek, Mark and I spent the late afternoon playing with building toys with the kids, and then they took to teaching us a big vocabulary of Laos words using these domino/matching toy things that had pictures on them. I wasn't very good at remembering them all, but Derek managed to pick up words for zebra, lemon, mango, ambulance, airplane... We'll see if he remembers them all tomorrow because we're going back.
Oh, and remember that colouring book and pencil crayons I bought back in Krabi? Well, we were looking at a couple of the books produced by Big Brother Mouse and one of the young staff members showed us a colouring book that they make. I brought out
Nice view and a beer Laos
We had an hour to kill before we went to the children's center, so we decided to try our first Beer Laos at a shady table at the riverside. Not at all a bad beer for about $0.75US! It was a great way to spend an hour, let me tell you
my colouring book to show him, and asked if the kids might like to colour with it. He said they probably would (he's only been studying English for a year so sometimes our communication with him was strained) and talked to the children in Laos. They were all busy playing so I didn't think they'd be interested in colouring, but boy was I wrong!! It was literally like throwing a sandwhich to a flock of seagulls. They all threw their body on the colouring book and started grabbing and hording pencil crayons. Wow. I wasn't prepared for it at all. At one point I think the colouring book even had to be taken away until everyone settled down. Although they have colouring books, I get the impression that colouring implements are very hard to come by. Derek stayed with that mob to mediate sharing as best he could, while I moved on to calmer children and played with some fake Lego. I've never seen so many kids colour a single picture at one time. When kids had to start leaving at 6:30 for supper, they all said "see you tomorrow!" in Laos or English, so we had no choice but to promise to see them again! I'm looking forward to our return!
We have a big day planned for tomorrow, which will hopefully include a trip to a breathtaking waterfall which many friends from the boat trip gushed to us about this evening when we saw them around. Can't wait!
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