The worst feeling is not loneliness, sometimes it is being forgotten by someone you can’t forget.
Lying 4 kilometers northeast of Vientiane, Laos is ທາດຫຼວງ (That Luang) or Great Stupa. Featuring two temples with its main stupa rising up to 148 feet and cloaked in gold leaf, it is embraced as a national symbol and cherished as the most sacred monument of this tiny, landlocked Southeast Asian nation. That Luang is believed to be built as early as the 3rd century to house a breastbone of the Blessed Buddha, brought to Laos by an Indian missionary. Its current appearance is the 1500s structure built on a Khmer ruin during King Setthathirat's reign. Adorned in a rich fusion of distinct Laotian and Buddhist influences, the architecture of That Luang is one that highlights depictions of Buddha, pointed stupas, finely-gilded, red lacquer doors, as well as images of animals and flowers to name a few, bound together in a golden cloak. During its many centuries of existence, That Luang has suffered numerous major destructions from the hands of foreign neighboring powers that invaded the country, such as the Khmer, Burmese, Chinese and Siamese. However, despite all these, That Luang would rise up and be the beacon that it currently is.
Today, That Luang is home to Boun That Luang Festival, the most important Buddhist celebration in Laos. During this event, thousands of followers and tourists from the country and overseas come for religious reasons and to experience its myriad of colourful festivities.
Photo taken with a phone camera on a hot, cloudy morning in Vientiane.