Welcome to our Travel Journal -- Round The World 2004-2005 travel blog

It was felt saferto travel by air -- this town is a...

This is a beautiful city, at the confluence of two rivers, with...

Several temples are located at the top of the hills, but they...

A reclinig Buddha near the top of the hill.

Talking with a monk at the top -- he wishes to learn...

This town has a vitality not seen in many other places --...

We visited the local provincial hospital. Could not find anyone to talk...

Underground wiring to the hospital, connected via a broken tree trunk to...

Besides the wife and child, the dog can come along, as well.

Drying ricecakes at the roadside.

A lizard on a tree near the river-- looking for a meal.

We spent several hours next to the river, just watching people enjoy...

A boy with his dog spent the day -- fishing, chasing, and...

One inner tube and four boys makes an afternoon of fun.

We would goback here in a blink -- this is, as Joan...


In this country, shopping is an act of social obligation -- it is more about relationships than it is about things. Whether we buyfomr the 10 year old hawking painted grass, the paraplegic selling envelopes, or the minimart with air conditioning is a matter of social choice. Today, Darlene had an opportunity to purchase a hand embroidered bedcover for $18, $21, or$25. The basic issue came down to, how much do we have to lower the price before we purchase - in purchasing goods and services which are far below our commonly accepted market value in North America. Prices for many things on the street are low, because people need money, and their time is valued at a very low price. She was reminded to ask herself, "Are you a person who values things and uses people, or a person who values people and uses things?"

For me, I have found this all difficult to accept. I am uncomfortable being seen as a resource for these people -- but that would be the reality of visiting this country.



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