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Sep 13th 2011 3:40AM I grew up in Laos--I lived there in the 60's and 70's. I never once heard the country refered to as "Lao". Isn't until my good friend moved to Phuket and was talking to me about "Lao". that I heard it called this. I think this is a 21st name or post communist name for a beautiful country. It sounds very weird to hear it called "Lao".