A trip abroad will always promise you new experiences, especially amazing things. Laos, a remote country on the Asian continent is very popular with travelers from around the world in search of adventure and change of scenery. It still retains the authenticity and serenity, which are remained unchanged for centuries. In this article, we talk about 4 amazing facts in Laos in the eyes of travelers.
1. Man must be a monk at least once in his life
In Laos, 98% of Laotians are Buddhists. The whole man must become a monk at least once in his life. One can be a monk fleetingly.
There are six different categories of monks in Laos:
– When a person leaves the hospital or a problem, he makes a small retreat to chase evil spirits and becomes a monk for a period of one to three months.
– When we want to cremate a significant person in our life (for example, our parents), we become a monk for a period of three days to a week.
– When we recognize that we have a lot of luck, or to better know the path to nirvana, we become a monk for all life.
– When one is old and retired, in order to die calmly, he goes to the pagoda.
– When one cannot afford his study (which can only be done in the city), he can become a monk and then is financed. After that, he can leave the pagoda.
– A child under twelve can exceptionally become a monk if he is an orphan or his family is too poor to take care of him.
2. Eat rice by hand
In Laos, forks and spoons are used to eat dishes of all kinds, the chopsticks are used for dishes based on noodles. But rice is best eaten by hand, because there is a glutinous aspect that Laotians call “khao niao”.
This sticky rice is characterized by its amylose content and a high content of amylopectin, the two main starches. It is sticky, but dry, which allows forming small balls of rice and facilitates the taste by hand.
In Laos, sticky rice is a perfect accompaniment for salty dishes. It is served in a rattan to keep it always warm. In addition, some Laotian desserts are also composed of glutinous rice with coconut milk, banana or black beans.
3. Swimsuit for women
Laotian women are very modest. When women bathe, they mainly wear a “sin” or also called “sarong” which is a traditional Laos skirt made of cotton or silk. So, out of respect, avoid bathing in the water. Shoulder strap dress may be tolerated in some places for Western tourists. If for us, this accouterment nears ridicule, for Laotians, it is a swimsuit very “original”.
4. Bor Pen Yang
Bor Pen Yang, a Laotian expression that Laos people like to pronounce, even Laotian families living in France pronounce it. “Bor Pen Yang” means “no problem” or “It does not matter, I forgive you and forget your action”. This expression sometimes frustrates Westerners because problems are made to be solved and not just to be tolerated.
But in Laos, this expression has a different meaning and it is easier to accept when one is Buddhist. In fact, Laotians believe that if a fact has occurred, it is inevitable that it is impossible to change, so why waste time to try, nor the discussion, nor the confrontation lead to nothing. Acceptance is the best solution, whether for better or worse.