We got an email from Malida's cousin yesterday. Her husband has picked out some spots for us to stay when we meet up in Thailand and travel around together a bit. We will take the bus over to the Laotian border and rent a van and driver to take us into Pakse, which is the city closest to the Thai border. We will stay there one night, then head down to Don Det, an island in the Mekong, for a few days. Laos is pretty inexpensive still, and you can get a good hotel for about $30-40 a night.
I first met Malida on the bus to Pakse 11 years ago this month. She mentioned that yesterday, and added that if she had not been there, it would have been a boring trip for me. It was probably the first time in my life that I traveled with strangers, but I was in my adventurous phase, and was doing all sorts of things I had never done before.
After I booked the hotels in Laos, I worked on our itinerary for the rest of the time we are there. I love planning trips. There's just something about looking at a list of travel days and filling in the blanks. Most of what I fill in is around our travel days, and the days we will need to stay in a hotel. The rest of the days are just where we will be, and we can figure the rest out when we are there.
I saw this while Malida was out photographing the other day. Even from a distance it caught my eye--some small white thing on a railroad tie underneath a railroad bridge, in a protected wetlands area. That's a great thing about being a photographer--you are constantly scanning the environment for interesting things to photograph, and you see the world in a different way.
I was walking on campus yesterday and smelled tamale pie. It brought back memories of my childhood and the variety of casseroles my mom would make for us. Tamale pie, tuna noodle casserole, macaroni and cheese, and so on. The only one I have made as an adult is macaroni and cheese, but I have fond memories of all of them. I thought about making tamale pie last night, but ended up making chili gravy enchiladas instead. I might make tamale pie at some future point, but I doubt I will ever make tuna casserole. It just seems....wrong.
Hello Kitty likes tuna noodle casserole.