27 August 2002

20. - 27 AUG: Muang Sing - Luang Namtha

Another town which was much destroyed by US bombing and has now found a new lease on life from tourism and trade with China – lots of advertising boards in Chinese here, and several hotels and restaurants are owned by Chinese interests; Chinese products, including food, is widely available. We are unmistakably very very close to China...

Unusual collection of threats and warnings, conveying a number of attitudes and , ranging from a rather usual disclaimer (not to leave your valuables in the room), to the more original one forbidding “to bring sexual girls (courtesans) into your room, illegal things or drugs or play any gambling such as cards or any other bad things”. I had heard and read that prostitution was becoming widespread in Laos, as well as Cambodia, especially as Thailand had begun to crack down on child prostitution under international pressure.

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