So after a late lunch and a wander around some of the little stores, I made another rare purchase. We’d been promised that the weather was going to drop off in Laos, and we’d already experienced some freak rainstorms, so I wasn’t going to take any chances. I had seen a lot of people around Hanoi with winter hats, and I figured I should get on board with one too. A nice understated burgundy colour. Yes, I saw minion ones, but I didn’t really want one of those… in fact, there were references to minions everywhere. One of the girls on the trip bought a phone cover – how cute is this?
Even though the flight from Hanoi to Vientiane was little over an hour, what with baggage and security, immigration, and passport control on both sides, it felt like it took the whole day. The flight was ok, one of these little budget airlines in this part of the world. Not Air Asia, although I have used them quite a bit, and so long as you don’t have too far to travel, I couldn’t fault them at all, and their connecting flight service is actually incredible.
So, the “s” in Laos is silent when referring to the country, but when talking about the culture or the people, the “s” in pronounced. This look a little getting used to, but I guess it makes sense. It’s exactly the same as saying that people from Germany are German. [*EDIT* I got this completely the wrong way around, many thanks to a certain German teacher who clarified this for me! So therefore, “The Lao people are from Laos.” would be a grammatically and phonetically correct.]
Anyway, when we got to the hotel for the night, we freshened up and headed out to a beautiful restaurant where we sat on the rooftop, the wind rustling the leaves lightly and the sound of jazz music floating through the open windows. I ordered Indian food for the first time on the trip. Don’t get me wrong, nothing is ever going to compare to my mother’s recipes, but the naan was pretty good, the chicken was cooked well, not too spicy, the right flavours. Or maybe I was just craving masala without the tell-tale hints of lemongrass and kaffir lime leaves… Still can’t get away from sticky rice though, and surprisingly, it worked kind of well. Maybe it was the environment. Plus, they were serving Savanna Dry cider, none of this overly sweet fizzy stuff that we’d seen so far. Okay, it was a little on the pricier side, but I was on holiday! It had been quite an indulgent day since we flew instead of sitting for 14 hours in a bus, so I figured it couldn’t hurt!