Naga View

Noe seems to have strange fixation on the sunrise, as he wakes Lori up right about then every morning to feed. Can’t say I blame him.


It’s been too long since we visited our beloved “Baby Lady” restaurant and its resident (and very verbose and curious) bird.

Quite a few of the restaurants in our neighborhood are only written in Lao, so we make up names to remember which is which and refer to them at home. “Hot Chinese Place” is a lot easier to remember than “That Place on Rue Phontan Near the Corner of Rue Dongpayna on the Left Side Going North Where the Guy is Really Friendly and It’s Always Hot.”

Sometimes we’ll try to ask what the name is in Lao, but often the name is impossible for us to pronounce (or remember) on a regular basis. And besides, making up names for places is a lot more fun.

“Baby Lady” was the first restaurant we ate at on our first night after moving here last September, and for a while we were eating there about once a week. It’s so named because it’s run by a lady who adores and loves to play with Noe. The second the food comes out, the arms also come out and off goes Noe to play with her and her two adult daughters who help run the place. As we’ve mentioned in the past, this isn’t unique to this restaurant — but it was the first. So the name stuck.

Social Day for Noe! Off to work and daycare.

Speaking of daycare, Noe caught another cold this past week, accompanied by a low-grade fever. We were starting to get a bit concerned that this was turning into a cycle — two days a week at daycare, a week at home sick, a handful of days at daycare, a week at home sick. He had just gotten over a double ear infection two weeks prior (after two rounds of antibiotics) and now this.

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Coincidentally we had lunch planned with a pediatrician, his wife and young daughter. He confirmed what we had already been told from other expat parents here that a 2-3 week cycle of getting sick in the first several months after starting daycare is pretty common, and that it does eventually get better as the kid’s immune system develops and adapts. Thankfully, this bout resolved on its own after a long weekend and a couple days home with his old man, but still no fun.

Noe was sick over a weekend again (of course), and it turned out to be a beautiful one at that — mild temperatures and blue skies. We saw a window in the evening when he was acting almost normal-like to do an outing, and took it. On our way to the river, we stopped by a brand new French bakery that had just opened a few days before — Bakery by Boris. It was packed, but the pastry we had definitely lived up to the hype. Decadent dessert before dinner? Generally, no. But being otherwise homebound with a sick baby seemed to somehow justify it.

Back down on the Mekong. Love me some Mekong time. Can’t get enough, if you’ve noticed. Our favorite part is a dirt road/path south of downtown. I call it the Chomcheng path because it goes right by Wat Chomcheng. It’s a quiet, established neighborhood with few businesses, save for a couple of ramshackle little local eateries hanging off of the banks.

Remnants from a lazy, simpler time, far removed from the Chinese high-rise construction projects. Colonial and Lao-style houses intermingle along a shaded path bathed in the orange glow of a haze-covered tropical sunset reflecting off the Mighty Mekong, just down a soft, grassy embankment to our right. Perfect.

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Naga View Restaurant & Bar — a stilted mishmash perched on the banks of the Mekong. Somewhat reminiscent of eateries along the Mekong’s banks in Luang Prabang, but for one huge difference — this one ain’t for the tourists. This is just a local place hanging on — both literally and figuratively — to something that is rapidly disappearing here in Vientiane.

And yes, those are beers…and an iced coffee. Yes, I admit maybe the sunset coffee wasn’t the smartest idea, but seemed absolutely brilliant at the time, considering the past few days with Noe. Plus, it’s Little House DOUBLE brew — twice the coffee beans in the brew — awesome stuff. And besides, the beer and coffee cancel each other out, right?






It’s obvious one of us wasn’t having any of the double-brew iced coffee.






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