smile :) bar bungalows

luang phrabang was beautiful; the french influence, the great food and the relaxed atmosphere were just what the doctor ordered. but then it was time to get on yet another bus and go somewhere else…i’m not in vangvieng

the bus ride was not so bad, abot 6 hours in total including a few stops along the way to get more water and take on some food. the first of these stops wasn;t so great. as soon as we’d all bought food it was like the flood gates had been opened: about 20 young children swarmed aroung us begging for food. we all felt obliged to give them what we had and then had to go back and get some more for ourselves. but these kids were proper poor, or so they seemed (na this is laos, not thailand, i’m sure these were genuinely very poor). but we made it to  vangvieng as i said

it’s a strange place. it’s in the middle of nowhere and all it really has going for it apart from the incredible scenery is the river on which you can go ‘tubing’. more about than in a moment, i’ve not done it yet, we’re all going tomorrow. so aside from the many young tourist who come for the tubing, there’s a large handfull of older gnarlier hippies who must have come here, discovered the opium on sale at the bars and just got lost here. you see people walking down the middle of the road wearing sheets playing recorders totally oblivious to all around them. look another direction and there’s a group of young europeans with great suntans wearing prada swimming shorts.

on the plus side, and a major plus at that, i’m staying in a bamboo hut right by the river and the best and most chilled out bar in town and it’s only costing $2 a night! i had the best night’s sleep here last night, feel totally refreshed today. i got out on a motorbike today to see the coutryside around the town, saw some caves, went swimming in a fresh water lagoon after launching myself from the rope swing some 30 feet into the water. going to go now and do the same from the bar by my room. more about the tubing tomorrow. 🙂

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