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Bun and Boots

O My Buddha!

LAOS | Monday, 1 February 2010 | Views [628] | Comments [1]

WOOOOWWWWW.  So much to write in the last week.  Laos has been amazing and crazy all in good ways.  We are doing and seeing things we never thought we would.  

We started our Laos adventure with a short ferry trip across the Mekong River to Laos where we had to get our visas and experience a passport clusterfuck to say the least.  It was a madhouse and after an hour and a few tuk tuk rides we made it to another boat dock where we boarded the legendary slowboat.  Let's just call this Real World SlowBoat Mekong River because you are stuck on a boat for 2 days with 40 people, sitting on top of each other, drinking, smoking and straight river boating, as well as, GETTING REAL! The toilet is even the confessional.  Fortunately we made good friends with some great people to make this one of the best experiences of our lives.  Waterproof Uno, plus Would You Rather, oh yea and BEAUTIFUL scenery made the time go very quickly.  We became good friends with a Scottish couple, Daryl (or as we say DAHHHRRYYL) and Amanda, and a Norweigan couple, Siggy and Julie.  It's amazing how close you become to people when you are sitting on their laps on the Mekong River doing REAL talk.  Our first night in Laos we stopped overnight in Pakbang which solely exists for people traveling down the Mekong River. We met Marco Polo who runs the gross guesthouse we stayed at and served us dinner and looked like a Lao version of James Dean with a Michael Jackson jacket.  He bumped LCD Soundsystem while blowing fire from drinking Lao Moonshine.  Very entertaining and said "OHH, HELLO" over and over again which made us snort quite a bit. The best thing about Marco Polo is that he taught us a new phrase that we have been using non stop "O My Buddha" instead of "O My God"  GENIUS!

The next morning we boarded the slowboat again for an even longer day on the river. We are starting to learn there are no exact timetables here so we thought we had plenty of time.  Turns out, we didn't and ended up laying on the floor for 10 hours that day.  It was actually quite fun and we all survived.  Again the time went really fast.

We got to Luang Prabang by sunset and quickly fell in love with the city. It was a nice change of pace to be in a smaller quaint town with tons of charm.  The city has a French Colonial feel with friendly people, beautiful mountains surrounding it, and many orange robbed monks strolling around.  In the heart of the city is a tall hill with a temple on the top which we hiked up to with breath taking views.  The night market was great and we bought too much stuff as usual.  We can't resist! We tried street food and spicy papaya salad which made for an interesting experience when we were stuck at the top of the hill and started to feel our stomachs turn!  We also learned that most bars in Luang Prabang close early and everyone heads to the bowling alley for all you can bowl until the wee hours of the morning.  It was a very strange place and kind of felt like a high school dance.  It was Australia Day and all the Aussies were enjoying the day with some intense drinking.  It was also around this time when we realized we were prob the oldest ones at the bowling alley!  Cougar time!

We also took a tuk tuk out to the Kuang Xii Waterfall with our Norweigan friends.  We walked up to the bottom pool and were stunned at how blue the water was!  Also, that's when Megan had her first of MANY (too many to count) falls into the mud and water.  Quick sidenote, Megan is learning that Sara really likes to use her hands when she talks especially with people who don't speak English - must be the Italian in her or the Helen Keller in her, and Sara is learning that Megan is really good at accidentally hurting herself and currently looks like she surrived the battlefield of Laos with cuts, bruises, and scrapes all over her but still has a good attitude.  Good times!!!!  The waterfalls got better and better the more you hiked up the mountain.  It was a HUGE waterfall with a huge drop and gorgeous jungle and blue lagoon water.  We heard from some pals that there was a secret pool under the highest fall that you could swin in and was very remote.  We searched long and hard for this but the payout was amazing when we found it.  We were so high up and alone with water falling all around us and it was like a jacuzzi in paradise!  Very romantic for Megan and Sara :).  

We left LP after 3 days and were very sad because we could have easily stayed for 3 months or years.  It's been our favorite place so far.  We have noticed that everywhere we travel to in Laos we run into the same people from the SlowBoat.  The good, the bad, and the super annoying.  We took a grueling minibus drive down to Vang Vieng through a huge mountain range with a small windy road that was not wide enough for traffic both ways.  The mountains were stunning the higher we got into the range and you saw many ethnic villagers farming and hanging out in huts on the side of the road.  It was the windiest road we both have ever been on.  Our minibus driver loved Lionel Richie, Stevie Wonder, and Mother Lover (80s German Rock Band) and played the same cd over and over again and we were all singing along.  Whenever we pulled over he would roll the windows down and turn up the music so everyone knew how badass he was!  Why we always end up with the awesomest people, we are not sure, but we love it!

Vang Vieng was not much to look at when we first arrived and we were a little worried it would not be anywhere near as great as LP, but our hotel and river view were worth the trip here!  We met up with our Scottish friends for an epic day of inner tubing down the river.  You don't do much tubing, but a lot of drinking, dancing, rope swinging, zip lining, and sliding into the water.  From the start, everyone did the highest and scariest rope swing (30 feet plus) but Sara was deathly afraid to do it.  After a lot of peer pressure and Megan promising to be her life guard, Sara did it and was shaking for 2 hours afterward.  Nothing a little BeerLao can't solve.  We are all sore today and had a blast minus the 100 injuries Megan suffered of course.  Pictures cannot do this justice but everyone is safe, more or less.  

Instead of tubing today, we thought it would be a good idea to rent bikes and ride across the bamboo bridge to explore a cave we heard about.  The roads were all dirt and full of rocks.  Sun, rocks, and hangovers on a bike are not the best combo.  We found the cave where a gang of 10 year old boys were charging an entrance fee.  They guided us to this cool cave where there was a Buddha inside and we had to crawl under rocks to get to different rooms of the cave.  We were not prepared for this and Megan even had a dress on that is now covered in mud.  Ooopps.  The boys wore head lamps and gave us flashlights and we were very happy we had them along because it was pretty much like Fear Factor in that cave with huge spiders and holes to nowhere!

Tonight is our last night in Vang Vieng, where they all watch Friends in every restaurant, all they listen to is Euro trance music (same songs over and over again) and the night life consists of drinking out of buckets, dancing around fires down by the river, and basically more drunk people than Vegas.  It's a great town that you can walk through in 10 minutes but our livers can't hang too much longer and we feel like Golden Girls to these kiddos.  We really think that MTV should consider doing Spring Break here, Lao style!!!  Cancun has NOTHING on this RAVE.

We will check in again when we get to Vientiane and see if we can add pictures because we know you all want to see.  Especially Sara terrified on the rope swing and Megan crawling military style through a hole in a cave.

We are laughing our way through Laos!  

Love to all.


Bunny and Boots



OMG!Sounds sooo AWESOME!!! Sounds like a blast!!

A few of my favorites (in no particular order):

01. Luang Prabang (Def. want to go there!)

02. "Mother Lover (80s German Rock Band)"

03. "100 injuries Megan suffered"

04. "a Lao version of James Dean with a Michael Jackson jacket. He bumped LCD Soundsystem while blowing fire from drinking Lao Moonshine."

05. "Euro trance music (same songs over and over again) and the night life consists of drinking out of buckets, dancing around fires down by the river..." (Not really a favorite but I am cracking up imagining you guys there)

So glad you guys are having an amazing time! I can't wait to hear more and see pictures!!!

  nicole Feb 2, 2010 12:02 AM

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