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Road Trip Day 4 - One hell of a day!!!!!

LAOS | Wednesday, 26 November 2008 | Views [558]

After little sleep we set off in the early hours.  A beautiful start to the day....riding south with the sun coming over the hills.   After what was probably no more than two hours in the jungle, Tim got another puncture.  ****!  We had no choice but to head back yet again.  By this time the villagers we had met previously had lost interest, as it was the forth time we'd passed them!

We had the tyre fixed temporarily in a village and then decided to cut our losses and head back to the main road some kilometres North.  Our aim was to get to Pakse some several hundred Kilometres away, to pick up a new inner tube, brakes and tyre which were being sent down from Vientiene that evening.

It was a long ride.  We broke up the journey by thinking it would be a good idea to 'borrow' a wooden boat and hang out with some locals on a river.  Once in the middle of the river, and the boat nearly full of water, I realised why someone had left the boat on the riverbank in the first place. The local kids fishing on the river for some unknown reason found this highly amusing.  So with our clothes soaked we continued our route to Pakse.

Things were going pretty well until 150km North of Pakse when my chain broke.  Since it was now dark, the sparks hitting the road caused much curiosity to the people living in the town.  It was fortunate that the chain broke where it did as otherwise we would have been stuffed!   People came to my aid and it wasn’t long before a local mechanic was fixing the broken chain.  After an hour and a power cut later, the bike was road worthy again.

It was now quite late and we thought it best if we found somewhere to stay for the night.  The mechanic told us there was a place 5km south.  However, all we found was a family in a hut.  So we asked them if we could crash out on their floor.  (Didn't really care at this point).  They said yes, and as a gesture we offered to get the guys some beers.  So back on the bikes with 4 local Laos guys we rode off to find food and drink.

Should have known better!!!!   Tim and I were greeted by some pretty but very young Laos girls who took it upon themselves to join us at the table......another pick up joint!  No Boom-Boom, just Beerlao and food (crisps in this case) please!

I was most flattered that the girls found me 'very handsome man', but not sure whether one of them really 'Loved me long time'!    It was actually fine....surreal but fine..... they understood they weren't going to get any Falang here.  So one of the girls (when she wasn't busy doing other things) got her English/Laos book out and I help her with her English.

After disputing our bill we sped off into the darkness as we felt that staying the night in the 'family home' would be nothing more than weird!

We pulled over at another road side bar to work out our next move and have a beer.  This time, the bar was full of very friendly young boys.....it was all getting too much by now.  We downed our beers and got the bill....they had overcharged us.  After much debate we gave the bar owner what we considered a fair amount (based on the rest of Laos).  As we rode off I noted that the women was now on the phone, didn't think much of it until the Police stopped us a few kilometres down the road.  We had been drinking, spending time in a brothel and dodging a bar tab! It wasn't looking too good!   Fortunately they just wanted to see our papers.

So escaping from this district we headed once again Southwards.  It wasn't the best idea...it was pitch black and there was livestock on the road.  It was Tim's idea to wait for a car for us to follow....seemed like a good idea...we had a clear view of the road ahead and any livestock would be hit by the car and not us.   So we waited patiently by the side of the road for the next car to come.......it was a while before anything came, but as the lights of the next car got closer, we started up our bikes.  Well I did....Tim was frantically trying to get his key into the ignition.  What had happened the lucky cotton charm on the handles bars had been pushed into the ignition mechanism as he inserted his key....yet again we were f**cked.

We had no choice but to camp out in a rice field in a farmers hut.  I hang out my hammocks and turned in for the night wearing pretty much everything I had to avoid the cold and mosquitoes.

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