Culture Shock :: Laos

27 02 2009

Laos is the most laid back, easy going culture that we’ve been to yet. The people are typically very friendly and the pace of life, even in the capital city, Vientiane, is almost sluggish. This has been a great country in which to wind down after the chaos of Vietnam. The culture here, although not very shocking or in you face, is probably the most different from our Western way of life. The difference is difficult to explain. It’s actually easier to explain relative to Laos’ neighbors. Thailand is shocking, but rather western because of their own efforts to modernize. Cambodia has a country wide case of amnesia (for good reason) and it appeared to us that their main goal is to act as western as they can. In Vietnam they have so much western influence from being colonized by the French that some parts of it almost seemed European. Laos had the French influence as well, but didn’t get the money that came with it. They retained much of their Buddhist culture and peaceful way of life. Though the country wasn’t as shocking as it was a pleasant surprise, there are a few things we thought were worth mentioning. Read the rest of this entry »

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Culture Shock :: Romania 2

27 06 2008

Since Romania was our first international stop on this globe-trotting adventure, we happened to notice a fair amount of cultural ‘differences’, if you will. Unfortunately we decided to write on this topic a little late in our tour of the beautiful country and now we don’t have the time, or the memory, to go into detail on every difference. Instead, we’ve chosen the stand-outs to mention in the last Culture Shock post for Romania. Read the rest of this entry »