The best, the most memorable, the most important reason to travel is to interact with the people of the country. We enter a country with hope, certain expectations and a curiosity about the place. We make plans upon, and save our money just to see how other people: live, work, play and celebrate.
That original eye-opening, horizon-building purpose is washed away when a place becomes too touristy. The road just too well traveled waters down the mystery and excitement of discovery, or at least steals the thunder out of our travel stories. That’s not to deny a country or a certain place their fair share of the tourism pie, but there is a point where tourism becomes just a business; cold and corporate.
That’s exactly where Vientiane, Laos is headed. I don’t know exactly what happened. Perhaps it was the UN money pouring in for development, or the . . . → Read More: Vientiane, where has your smile gone?