Rats, Birds and Cannabis Farms : An unusual trip to a Morning Market in Sepon, Laos.
Above photo: Young girls with small birds in Sepon market.
On one of my recent BACK-related research trips around Laos, I recently spent a few days in Sepon (called Tchehone during the Vietnam War), which lies very close to the Vietnamese border.
Given Sepon’s proximity to the border, and having frequently experienced the general unfriendliness and bad attitudes of most of the Vietnamese we came across in Laos, I was expecting the worst when I visited the town, but was surprised by how friendly and welcoming the place was.
I met one very friendly Vietnamese man, in his late twenties. He didn’t speak a word of Laotian, but spoke some English and was very excited to talk to me.
The conversation went like this, once I’d told him I was from England:
MAN: “Ah you from England. I have been to England. I lived there for five years. I liked it!”
ME: “Really? Where did you live?”
MAN “In Birmingham.”
ME: “Where about? I know Birmingham well, and have friends from there…”
MAN “I stayed in Birmingham prison! I grew Cannabis in a house and got caught. No money from gang in Vietnam…”
We then said our goodbyes and continued on our way to Sepon’s early morning market, where I took the above and below-captioned photos.
See the trailer for our new film, M.I.A. A Greater Evil. Set in the jungles of Laos and Vietnam, the film deals with the possible fate of US servicemen left behind after the US pulled out of the Vietnam War.
For POWs left behind in Laos, see also:
© Peter Alan Lloyd
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