We fell easy asleep last night. The cabin in the jungle hadn’t given us much sleep so we slept until 8:30 and then had a slow morning.
When we finally was finished with breakfast we took the day slow and simple. We walked around and talked and found we wanted to bicycle a bit. First we stopped at the baguette mafia in the street to buy lunch. It was our green discovery guide that said it was a mafia. They would only sell you made sandwiches, not the single baguette. We didn’t care any which way. We got baguettes with what we wanted on them.
We rented mountain bikes and set off to Chang cave. We didn’t really have high hopes to what we would find, but paid our entry fee and climbed the stairs. We we’re very happy we had taken the ride out here. The cave was huge, and it was made easy to walk around inside. We walked inside the cave for about half an hour before emerging back out in the sunlight.
We sat down in the park below the cave and had lunch there. Quiet and calm, just in front of the river.
There are three bridges over the river here. Two you have to pay to cross over, and the one we just passed is not connected to the rest of the roads on this side. So it’s back over the one we came, pass the middle one, into the city center, down the hill and across the third. Back to the second one and into the island. We’re now heading for the blue lagoon. Sounds nice, right?
It’s dusty as hell, on the road out to the lagoon. We eat red dust by every passing car and motorbike. Ptwh!
Even though we’re thirsty like camels and dust covered like a Stephen Hawkins book at a republican senators library, we enjoy it. It’s a nice ride and we get into the countryside a little.
The ride is better than what we find at its end.
The blue lagoon is a joke in terms of lagoon. It’s a little water deep enough to jump into, but it’s not a lagoon like anything you imagined in your head. Add to it a bus load or two of young Koreans and you have a recipe for “Not for me, thanks!”
We take a drink there, eat the rest of our baguettes and ride back. Isn’t it strange that the ride back always seems shorter that the ride to? At least it does to me. Soon we’re back in the town and return the bikes.
Walking towards the center we pass a massage institute and take a Lao massage. You know the delicious feeling you get when you enter a spa that’s quiet and tranquil? Where the lightning is soft, there’s music softly coming from the speakers and your guided into a little closed room where you’ll get your massage? Not like this at all!
It was good, though, but the standard of the “spa” was rather questionable. I don’t know how many people have laid on that mattress before me. Nor how many have drooled on the same pillow. On top of this the girls chatted constantly. Or rather, mine did. Constantly. When the other girl went out to get something I thought she might stop, but no. She just talked louder so it could be heard outside. Brilliant.
From there I stepped to the motorcycle and barber shop. Time for my tune up. I ordered cut and shave. I got both, but the chair was so short in the back I had to lay with my ass outside to be able to keep my head on the headrest for the shave. Not a position you want to have when a mechanic is holding a razor sharp blade to your throat. But hey, when in Laos..
After this it was extremely satisfying to take a shower. To scrub of the dust and the hairs and just feel clean for a minute. Because when we went out for dinner in this dusty town you get dirty again in a second.
We had dinner at one of the places that shows Friends over and over all day, every day. We sat through two episodes and reminisced over the series before going back home. Another early night, tomorrow is and a early rise for a bus ride to Luang Prabang.
“How you doin’?”
– Joey Tribbiani