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Sunday, 17 July 2011
A Sunday Brunch in Luang Prabang, Laos
At an open restaurants on the banks of a magnaminous river, I sit at a table, covered with a checkered table cloth. On the opposite bank are moored long boats--each around twenty meters in length. Beyond them mountains have risen long ago like gigantic tortouise shells, covered with emerald fur. I order a vegetable curry, spring rolls, and a shake made with dragon fruit and coconut. While the food is cooking the restaurant owner / chef / waitress / mother teaches her young boy to read. They look at a chart of animals; the type of animals a child in South East Asia ought to know: frog, snake, tiger, crane. It drizzles, a slow lazy rain. There's no hurry in Laos; not from the people, nor from nature. The curry arrives: a bright, deep yellow-orange--sweet and salty and spicy and creamy and delicious. I eat like someone in love, then peek at my watch and see that I am late for an appointment. I'm probably the only person in the whole of Laos "late" for anything.