Tony Mangan ‘Walk Around The World’ #22

Like everyone else, you want to learn the way to win, but never to accept the way to lose, to accept defeat, to learn to die is to be liberated from it. So when tomorrow comes, you must free your ambitious mind, and learn the art of dying.

― Bruce Lee

Bruce Lee was a famous American martial artiste of Asian decent who moved with grace and energy. Although he moved with intense purpose through the air at high speed we always knew he was central to our movie screens whenever there was action from Asia.

At the beginning of this series of articles some months ago there was a video accompanying  each piece of writing which often asked the opening question by yours truly each week by wondering ‘Where`s Tony?’

Not long into each small video clip it was clear that Tony Mangan of was somewhere new of note having fun and frolicking with the natives deep in the southern hemisphere.  Once Tony got to Asia some weeks back it became apparent that he had  little internet band width and  communicating with him has been quite difficult at times.

So, in these past couple of weeks I  have really wondered to myself  ‘Where [the heck] is Tony?’ and ‘What has he been doing?’. Last night Tony and I eventually got chatting and as I suddenly enquired as to his whereabouts and queried how he was getting along , he  speedily replied back (all be it in a very brief manner) that his  location was in Laos and that the  people are:

 ‘...smiling in spite of the big flood that the country had just experienced’.

If you are reading this and wondering  where is Laos? then, allow me to fill you in very briefly.

Laos is located in South East Asia in-between five countries namely China, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia and Burma.

As a former French colony from 1893, it was first recognized in the history of humans over 10, 000 years ago.  Then, stone tools and skulls were unearthed.  Over the next couple of centuries humans settled in Laos and the capital became located in Xiengthong.  Now known as Luang Prabang, the capital and the country of Laos was granted it`s own independence in 1953 after world war 2 had caused much a rumpus for the natives.

Still, that was not the last of the wars that they were to experience. In 1964 the USA bombed North Vietnamese troops who were in eastern Laos and this saw the outbreak of a conflict between the royalist Vientiane government and the communist Pathet Lao.

As a result eventually the Pathet Lao took control of their misfortune and created the Democratic Republic in 1975. Over twenty years later in 1997, Laos had matured so much as a market economy that developed a thriving tourist economy and joined hands with neighbours to become members of Asean.

Lately there was a major dam collapse there and reports said that there were 20 dead and over 100 missing as well as having nearly 7000 people being made homeless.

As Tony Mangan is known to us all as a resilient sort by trotting  around the globe it seems that he is at home for now in South East Asia. As we have seen his smiling face on many a video screen up until now then ‘for sure ‘he is meeting his match in the unfortunate but resilient people of Laos in spite of all their battles and losses and their smiles in face of what fellow Asian representative Bruce Lee said was the ‘… art of dying’.


About the Author

Conor Hogan
As a native Galwegian, Conor Hogan teaches and consults across the areas of education, well-being and health while also researching human behaviour for his PhD at NUI Galway. After winning regional and national leadership awards, he blogged and co-authored a book on Mental Health for Millennials. He tells us he will endeavour to enrapture the glint of the Galway Eye 🙂 You can find out more about Conor at