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Laid back in Laos

overcast 42 °C

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We have now been in Laos for 10 days and what a change from the hustle and bustle of China . As soon as we crossed the border a more chilled out feel was evident , the manic drivers with their honking horns and constant overtaking disapeared to be replaced by a far happier population even though most buildings are nothing more than shacks ands the roads seriously pot holed .
After a four night stay at Luang Nam Tha where we caught up with chores and even hired a motorcycle(125 cc) this was my first time on two wheels since the late sixties and although i was a bit wobbly at first i soon got the hang of it and spent two days whizzing around the countryside with Sandra on the back . Found a nice restaurant while out riding in the middle of a paddy field on stilts ate fried rice with pork and a few beer lao . The heat and humidity is quite stifling and exercise is out of the question so its looking for shade and plenty of lazing around .
Now moved on to Luang Prabang and all of a sudden we are surrounded by backpackers and tourists , we are no longer the center of attention and after months of film star status its back to being normal . We arrived by river boat it was a five hour journey down the Mekong a welcome change from the truck which CJ and Jim went by road and beat us by one and half hours . The accommodation is better than the last place where the bathroom consisted of a hole in the floor (squat toilet) and cleaning your teeth down there was not a pleasant experience but it was a great view from the balcony across the river .
Its now the 5th August and its off to Vienviang where the famous river tubing takes place . Apparently there were problems on last years trip and Odyssey decided that you had to sign of the tour for the day if you wanted to participate . As its rainy season the river is high and fast and when floating down in an inner tube you visit numerous bars for cheap drinks and drugs , as this not really our scene we have decided not to take part , the dozen or so that went had an excellant time but there were many bruises and scrapes evident the next morning .
We have now moved on to the capital Vientiene for four nights but being a big city not a lot to do here , there are loads of orange robbed monks and numerous brightly decorated temples . Once a day early in the morning they parade through the streets where locals hand them food as offerings sometimes they are quite particular what they will accept and blatently ignore some hand outs .
Next stop on 10th August national park by boat for two nights .

Posted by palaceboy1 21:00

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