November 24, 2001

Market Day

Chiang Kong is the first city I've been in small enough to have a market
day. Actually, probably the second--Tha Ton had a market building but no
market when i was there. Here it's a night market. On Saturday night, the
main street through town is closed to vehicles for a stretch (they're
detoured through the back alleys) and it's full of vendors. Pretty typical
selection of stuff, though socks and hats are featured due to the cold snap
right now. And of course food.

Earlier today I saw something else new--travelling car salesmen. Or
something of the sort. Fequently you'll see trucks passing through towns or
cities with loudspeakers blaring some sort of advertisement. And at dusk in
small towns, a permenant loudspeaker system broadcasts local news, some
music, and some public information (presumably 'kill mosquitos' and the
like). From here you can hear some of the Lao version of this, which
supposedly is all propoganda. Anyway, this truck would actually stop and
move very slowly for a bit. And it was followed by almost every model of
Toyota (mostly various forms of pickup), with "Test Drive" signs on some of
them. How would that go over in the USA?

Probably about as well as the bamboo hut I'm staying in. It's OK, the first
place I've been with a mosquito net and the first which required it.
Thatched roofs don't do much against bugs, and probably don't do much for
rain in the wet season either. I'll be here for two more nights, tomorrow I
may actually go to Mynmar for a bit with the people I hung out with in
Chiang Rai. Then off to undeveloped countries....

Posted by MBlain at November 24, 2001 12:00 AM
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