christopher federer

: farmer of collaborative arrangments

10 Thoughts after a week in Laos

10 Laos half-baked travel thoughts :

A gutted 2″ binder can be lumbar support, ergonomic workstation, laptop case, and head rest. Add it to your travel gear list.

Fools romanticize poverty instead of simplicity.

How do you explain backpacker behavior to a local when taking mushrooms and falling off cliffs is the norm?

North Asian tourists will pay and endure extreme discomfort to avoid the sun. Rent them wetsuits and umbrellas.

Laos is the perfect country to ride your bike through… Empty highways and stunning scenery.

Thai immigrations is a nightmare. If your base is Bangkok take domestic flights and hop the river in and out of Laos. It’s cheaper, faster, easier.

A small dry-bag makes the best inflatable pillow.

Laos and Thailand have cracked down on Prostitution. Keeping the sex trade in the dark allows it to flourish and makes it more difficult for sex workers to assert their rights. It should be legalized and monitored like in Las Vegas, Amsterdam or Singapore.

It’s not antisocial to spend time collaborating on the internet instead of bullshitting in the bars… It’s often just more interesting.

If you join up with locals you’ll miss 60% of the activities you planned on doing but gain more in insight.

Volunteer Intentions, Create More Tensions?

Once upon a time there was a crisis of good intentions haunting many parts of the world. Everyday unskilled, short-term volunteers traveled to distant lands to help people and do stuff. One day we realized these volunteers weren’t effective and often exacerbated abandonment, corruption, and local power dynamic problems. ¬†Because of that, we realized volunteers had to learn how to develop new skills and identify problems. Because of that, we needed to create communities to help volunteers take learning into their own hands through personal projects that make a difference. ¬†Until finally we realized volunteering if done properly could lead to realistic community impact and that education could be something you create, not just consume.