After an uneventful journey on the overnight train to Nong Khai, I met up with Nai and we decided to stay in the small border city for a few days before going to Laos. At the moment, I’m in Vientiane, and I still haven’t decided whether to venture up to Vang Vieng or to go back to Bangkok tomorrow and then to either Phuket or Hua Hin to take in a few days at the beach.
Nong Khai hasn’t changed all that much, unlike Bangkok, which has dozens of new buildings going up and old ones being torn down; the skyline seems to be in a constant flux, undecided as to what face it wants to show. Everything is open again, at least those places not destroyed by arson in the recent protests. There are very few signs of the trouble, though a cleaning man pointed out a couple of bullet holes in the metal railing of one of the skywalks near Central World, courtesy of the Thai army, he told me.
Vientiane is also seeing a lot of activity, with new construction going on in the city itself and along the banks of the Mekong, where a new waterfront park is slowly taking shape. It’s been very dry and hot here, though we’re getting a bit of rain this morning. I’m not sure where my next post will be from, but I’ll certainly have more later.