Slow Boat to Luang Prabang
Christmas Bowling in Laos…
Our Friend Kham
Off To Vietnam!
So it’s 2012. We’ve spent Christmas in Laos and New Year in Vietnam, so when I say that that it was a “glimpse” of Laos, that’s what it actually was. We hear it’s nice, and we’ll continue to believe that. We honestly feel like Laos has been that last piece of pizza that sits in the box and goes uneaten, only to be thrown out the next morning. What I mean is – It’s beautiful and tasty, we were just too full to enjoy it.
We took a slow boat from the border of Thailand down to Luang Prabang, watching river villages go about their daily chores like we didn’t even exist. Wonderful to see. Communities seeming to be untouched by the normal hussle. Fishing nets in the water, white sand beaches on the shore and kids running naked and free…hehe, no joke.
We arrived in Luang Prabang, got settled, and hit up the night market for some cobra whiskey… the real deal, and it tasted about as good as it sounded.
We rode bicycles around the town, which is a Unesco site in itself. We got up early to watch the monks receive their alms, and we visited a beautiful waterfall, which you could swing into from a handy rope swing.
We celebrated Christmas buy buying each other gifts from the market, wrapping them and putting them under our 1 foot tall tree. We ate turkey sandwiches, complete with gravy and stuffing – and listened to xmas tunage….
Sounds great! Why the complaining?…. to be fair, it was great… but we began to hit our “Wall”.
We’ve been travelling for awhile now and you tend to get tired. Different place every-night, your mind working overtime to catch the next scammer or save the next dollar. Your brain eventually goes into hibernation and you just assume EVERYONE is trying to scam you… which is “unfair and untrue you think”… until you get scammed again.
Most of the two days in the boat were spent reading the Gospel…the Lonely Planet of course. The rest was talking about budgets, and where to go next, where to fly to-from and when. We avoided Vang Vieng because we were trying so hard to miss the routine “Tourist route” (Yes we often forget that we’re tourists…) and although it offered some good climbing, we didn’t feel that we could squeeze it in.
That was followed up by long hours in the coffee shop trying to find “normal” food. Reconnecting with family and posting mad amounts of pictures to the internet…not to mention writing blogs…
Although that said, after taking a 30 minute tuk-tuk ride, to a deserted bowling alley in the middle of nowhere. And smoking copious amounts of Chinese cigarettes given to us by the bowling alley owner…don’t ask…we made friends.
We played a round with the owner, a few staff and then had beers with some nice guys from Germany. The next day we met our friend Kham and had lunch with him, learning a bit more about what it’s like to live in Laos.
After that glimpse, we we’re off…. time is ticking and their’s so much to see! We’re off to Vietnam to have a peak.