The Vietnam-Laos Solidarity and Friendship Year 2012
Beloved country of Laos: A peaceful and friendly city of Vientiane (Part 2)
PANO - I have visited Vientiane and its tourist sites several times but I never saw local people quarreling or fighting in streets.
All people we met in streets, at restaurants or conferences were very pleasant, cheerful and helpful. For me, Vientiane deserves to be one of the most peaceful and friendly cities in the world.
Beloved country of Laos: An ardent love for Hua Phan (Part 1)
Colonel Can Thoong, Head of the Office of the General Department of Politics of the Lao People’s Army told us that most of Lao people are Buddhist followers and many families would like to send their children to pagodas to train their patience and mild temper. The more Lao people show solidarity and friendliness with their fellows, the more they respect and esteem Vietnamese because of the great practical support of Vietnam to Laos during the national resistance war and the more they cherish the traditional special relations of Laos-Vietnam.
|A monument for heroes and martyrs in Vientiane
According to Lao language, Vientiane means the Moon, and it is so sacred and close to everyone. Vientiane is an ideal city for those who desire to learn Buddhism because Laos is the nation of Buddhist pagodas. In spite of suffering heavy damage from wars, Vientiane luckily could still preserve its ancient temples which not only deeply express the Lao architecture quintessence but also are the symbol of the Lao people’s traditional culture, lifestyle and habits.
Perhaps, Buddhism influences somewhat on people in Vientiane. I took notice that they troll more leisurely than people in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City do, even to offices, markets, schools and entertainment sites. Visiting the city’s markets, we thought we were in supermarkets as their kiosks are very tidy and clean. By June 2012, the population of Vientiane reached more than 800,000. Automobiles are one of major means of transport but no traffic congestion happens as people are much disciplined. The Lan Xang Avenue widens tens of meters but there are only two rows of automobiles in each line and rarely an offence of the traffic law occurs.
Vientiane people go to bed early, normally before 10 p.m. Thus, restaurants or leisure centers also follow this custom without any regulations from local authorities. No restaurant open after 11 p.m in Pha Ngum, one of the busiest streets in Vientiane. There are many pubs in this street but Lao people seem to drink Lao beer and wine. Their drinking style is also different from Vietnamese as they drink leisurely.
Many Vietnamese nationals have been residing in Vientiane. That is why many Lao people have good command of Vietnamese language and we found difficult to identify them as everybody is friendly and amiable. Mr. Pham Van Tin (Hoa Lu district, Ninh Binh Province), an overseas Vietnamese in Vientiane, said that all Vietnamese expatriates are close to both Laos and their homeland. They unite with local people to benefit the beautiful country of Laos and promote the Vietnam-Laos special solidarity. It is very easy to find a Vietnamese restaurant in Vientiane, especially Vietnamese famous dishes of Quang noodle, Hanoi noodle soup and Saigon noodle with seasoned and sauté beef.
Noteworthy is that many Vietnamese big banks such as the VietinBank, BIDV and MB set up their subsidiaries in Vientiane. Especially, the Vietnamese military-run telecom Viettel has invested a large mount of capital in Laos and at present, its networks cover most of Laos’ territory. The Viettel’s branch in Laos is one of the biggest tax payers to Laos’ national budget.
Vietnamese Ambassador to Laos, Ta Minh Chau, said that in the recent years the Vietnam-Laos economic ties has considerably thrived. To date, Vietnamese businesses have invested about US$ 3.6 billion in 424 projects in Laos, ranking second among foreign investors in the country. Furthermore, the two nations’ relevant bodies plan to increase the bilateral trade turnover to US$ 1 billion 2012 and US$ 2 billion in 2015.
Written by Do Phu Tho
Translated by Van Hieu