Sunday, April 17, 2011

A Plane Old Shadow

plane shadow

Plane and shadow racing to land first.

Taken for Shadow Shot Sunday

Camera Critters: A Xieng Khouang Lizard


Just happened to be walking by this house and looked up - and saw this lizard eying me, wondering if I was good to eat, or just too large to be worth the trouble.

This is my contribution to "Camera Critters", creatures from around the world.

Saturday, April 16, 2011


Photohunter #261 is "Road."

This used to be the main road between Xieng Khouang and Paksan. Over the past few years, they have built a new highway, which is still a dirt road but a bit wider. Vehicles can go faster, leaving huge clouds of dust behind them. But this road, which meanders through small towns and through the rice fields is from a different time, and a slower mind-set.

mainhighway once

My contribution to  Photo Hunter

Lao New Year in Kham District


This past week has been devoted to Lao New Year. I've been up in Xieng Khouang Province, where most of my Lao friends live. I enjoy making the rounds of relatives, parties at the offices of Lao development partners, attending very ceremonies, etc. This often involves eating a lot and drinking BeerLao.

The skies threaten rain, a bit early and a bit heavy for this time of the year. The mornings start off very foggy, followed by clear skies in the late morning/ early afternoon. In the late afternoons, the thunderclouds roll in, followed by a storm for several hours.

Kham sky1

Thunderclouds moving in.

Kham sky2

We climbed partway up the mountain to make offerings to Am's parents and clear the area around their monuments (which contain the ashes). We hurried back across the fields as the sky started to get darker.


We stopped at the Buddhist temple in Mun Village, where Am was born. During the war, the B52s made daily bombing raids. Am remembers running across the field to take refuge in this temple. One day, a plane dropped a 250 lb. bomb, which landed next to the temple - but did not explode. The villagers revere the Buddha image in this temple for its ability to protect people.


View from the back of the temple, past a prayer flag.

kham sky5

The roof and monument were replaced on the temple six years ago.

We returned to Phonsavanh, meeting the thunderstorm along the way

That's my contribution for Skywatch Friday - other pictures from around the world can be found at Skywatch Friday.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Temple guardian

Chinese Dragon, originally uploaded by c_p_lew.
Two lions guard the entrance to the Chinese Temple in Pakse. It's a beautiful place and follows the Feng Shui rules, with river and mountains in their correct places. A statue of Kuan Yin, the Boddhisattva of Compassion, looks out over the Mekong.

I hope this qualifies as a critter! In any case, this is my contribution to "Camera Critters", creatures from around the world.

Camera Critters



Carved wooden panels and their shadows

Taken for Shadow Shot Sunday, #151

Saturday, April 09, 2011

Dok Khun and tree

Dok Khun and tree, originally uploaded by c_p_lew.

This time of the year, the 'Golden Showers' trees are displaying the thick ropes of hanging yellow flowers. When I see the flowers, I know that it is really hot season - then I feel the heat and feel lazy.

Posted for Photohunt #260.

Friday, April 08, 2011

A few skies from Laos


It's been a while since I've posted. I've been on the road, doing work for various projects. Just returned to Vientiane today after three weeks of travel. The weather has also been uninspiring sky-wise - constant rain and extremely cold temperatures for most of March, which is really unusual for the hot season.

sunset palm small

One of the few evenings when the sun was out.


Sunset in Vientiane. The government has been renovating the whole waterfront area by the Mekong, part as flood prevention, part for beautification. Many people are drawn to the river, to walk out on the sandbars during the dry season.

water buffaloes

Just the past few days, the weather has returned to normal, reaching 100 F during the day. The water buffaloes only venture out in the late afternoons.

That's my contribution for Skywatch Friday - other pictures from around the world can be found at Skywatch Friday.

Sunday, April 03, 2011

snails for sale

snails for sale, originally uploaded by c_p_lew.
A split second in time. Someone caught her attention, lighting up her face at the end of a long day.
This photo was entered into the I Heart Faces photo challenge –