I experienced the most amount of racism in Laos than anywhere I have ever been before. I kid you not, every time I got on a bus in Laos, people looked at me like I wasn’t supposed to be there. They would actually get OFF the bus or move to the front if I was in the back and vice versa. No matter where I went there were 500 billion eyes on my every move in the most penetrating way possible. Like, I’m tired y’all.
On one particular bus ride (aka my bus ride OUT of Laos) a woman made gagging noises at me and everyone covered their noses whenever I walked by or was close to them. People pointed and laughed at me when the woman would openly pretend to puke. The bus driver even tried to get me off the bus by telling me the next bus stop was mine…even though I knew perfectly well that it wasn’t. I Rosa Parked my ass, but it was humiliating and dehumanizing and terrible. I was mad for a quick second but then remembered what a pity their lives must be for not knowing black people.
Anyway, I don’t regret coming to Laos because I saw some pretty wonderful things in Vientiane. It’s so amazing how the human mind is able to create such beautiful artifacts, yet turn around and treat other humans in such a disgusting way because they don’t look like you.
Only one local was kind to me in Laos, and it wasn’t even particularly towards me. It was towards me and the two other people I was with. He gave us a free ride on the back of his truck with our mud covered bikes all the way into town. It was a rainy day and riding our bikes back was not safe in the terrain we were in. We got his truck completely dirty but he asked for nothing in return after giving us a ride. That act of kindness was the only saving grace in Laos.
See ya never Laos. Seriously. Never.