RANGOON — If you’ve been to the Ho Chi Minh Museum and nearby mausoleum in Hanoi, Rangoon’s Drugs Elimination Museum has a familiar feel during Burma’s monsoon season, when a humid grayness hangs over the three-story building—a sweatier Rangoon version of Hanoi’s hoary and drizzly December days.
VIENTIANE – It should have been one of those rite-of-passage days for any teenager. On their way to school to collect exam results, *Phongsavath and two friends noticed an unusual-looking round steel object in the grass nearby. “We picked it up and passed it among us, wondering what it was and looking close,” he recalls, a wry half-smile belying the horror story to come. “I tried to open it,” he says, laughing at what in retrospect he says was his childish curiosity. “We looked at it, we passed it around. I tried to open it, but then It blew up”, he says, losing his hold on his white cane as he speaks. “Now as you see, I have no hands”.