I’m off in an hour to begin my vacation to Laos and Thailand. I’m taking the bus to Seoul today, since the plane leaves at 10:30 tomorrow morning. It’s a 3 1/2 hour trip to Seoul, meaning I have to spend the night there to catch the flight on time. No problem–Seoul is always fun, though expensive. I’m meeting my Korean friend, Charlie Shin, for lunch. I also have to buy a good, time-wasting book for reading while lazing the hot summer afternoons away along the banks of the Mekong River. It’s been raining a lot in Laos, my friend Nai tells me, but I hope the rainy season is not too rainy.

I get into Bangkok airport about 4 tomorrow afternoon, then I take the 9pm overnight train to Nongkhai. It arrives at 9am and Nai will meet me there. Then we will cross the Friendship Bridge into Laos, where I have to get a two-week visa. Nai lives about 20 kilometers outside Vientiane. I hope we’ll be able to take in some of the beautiful sights of Laos, including Luang Prabang and Vang Vieng. At any rate, I should have good internet access, so I’ll be making frequent posts to the blog. More later.