It took me 14 hours to fly from Atlanta to Seoul, South Korea. I sat in the airport/mall for about 6 hours admiring their almost “clone” like society and their expensive toys. Then it was another 5 hour flight to Bangkok, Thailand. There I sat and just people watched in the airport for 12 hours. The following morning it was a short 1 hour flight to Vientiane, Laos. When I immediately landed around 1 pm, some friends of the family took me straight to the place where I was born. Quite a shock, coming from the places where “the other half lives” and immediately taking a drive to the flooded portion of Sithantay, a small village that used to be on the outskirts of the capital of Vientiane.
My family joked that I came back at the right time, to take photos of the Mekong River flooding, which according to my dad, was the worst in about 40 years. It was ridiculously hot, and it was strange hugging and greeting people that have only seen me in photos, and I’m sure my American mannerisms and speech is quite odd to them.
The photo with the boat in the lower left hand corner, that’s my Dad’s old house. The house with me in front, that’s my mom’s family’s house, and where I lived until about age 3.
It was humbling and also troubling to be back, but I’m glad it was my first stop on this trip.