Let's put this in a context we can all understand and see if it works:
Imagine you are in a foreign country, or imagine you are a foreigner in your own country and you are cycling.
You come into a small town. A small town in France or Ontario or the United States ... and you cycle up to a house and say, in broken English or French, "Hello! Me am tired and hungry. Me need sleep, eat, drink, wash..."
How do you think you would be treated?
Imagine you are sitting on your front porch and a dirty foreigner comes along and presents himself to you. Your immediate reaction would probably be suspicion or fear or not wanting to be bothered.
For the Lao, the most immediate reaction is: "Come in and make yourself at home!"
Time and again I asked myself what made these people so unique, so warm, welcoming and pacific. I am still trying to figure it out.
Here are pictures of people I just passed on the road.