My friend Nai said that “we have rain a lot last night,” so, hopefully, the drought over there will be ending soon, with the monsoon season approaching. I check the Vientiane weather report every day at Weather Underground, and I can’t begin to tell you how many days the temperature has been over 95 degrees F. the last month or two, with no rain. Recently, Nai said that there have been days when there’s not been enough water to take showers (they buy all their drinking water in bulk), and the crops are hurting. The Weather Underground site also reports that March was the hottest or 2nd hottest month on record globally (depending on which agency–NOAA or NASA–reported it). To top it all off, Nai’s mother has been ill for about 3 weeks now, so the recent Songkran Festival (Thai and Lao New Year Celebration) was dampened quite a bit, due to the weather and the sickness. If you’re interested, there’s a very cute animated music video on Youtube about Songkran. Check it out here; I’m sure you’ll enjoy it!

As long as I’m on a Laos kick tonight, here’s an article about the French influence that’s still present in the former colony. Among other things, the author writes about the delicious baguettes, croissants and muffins, to which I’ll attest. It’s quite odd, but somehow satisfying, to see and smell the culinary relics of the French colonial era in this Communist relic.

Thankfully, I have the next week off, our usual mid-semester break. I’ll try to get out and hunt down some interesting photo opportunites–I have a few in mind, including some night shots and photos of the western coastline of Yeosu. Unfortunately, the weather service is predicting rain through next Thursday and we’ve had a bit today. More later.