A bed on a bus and Ted online
Trip Start Sep 28, 2009
92Trip End Apr 22, 2011
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Where I stayed
Royal Pakse Hotel
Nalin Tha Chaieun
Our plans changed and we didn't end up in Thakek in fact we stayed another day in Vientiane and booking ourselves on the overnight bus to Pakse which is way down in the south, 10 hours away. This left us with two days (as the night bus leaves at 7pm) with little to do but sit in air-conditioned bars and make use of their free WiFi.
So what do you do once you have checked your emails and bank account, wrote to a few people and put your bets on for the weekend......well you set Little Ted up a Facebook page of cause. What a way to kill two hours, the only thing is he’s getting more attention than we do and it won’t be long before he has more friends. He has already had a stranger request to be his friend and he gets more hits in a day then we ever do on ours. What have we created.....however if you want to add him look up Edward 'Ted’ Bear, he needs all the friends he can get.
The tuk tuk picked us up at 7pm to take us to the bus, it then picked up another 12 people with luggage. Our sardine can then drove for 20 mins out of town to the bus station. Our sleeper bus was amaizing, it had beds instead of seats. The bus slept 50, all double bunk beds with a five sleeper bunk along the back of the bus. They were not the biggest of beds and fine if you know the person you’re going to sleep with, but a few of the lads on our bus were on their own so had to sleep with a stranger. The beds were very clean, you got a pillow and a quilt which you needed as the A/C was a tad chilly. They came round with free water, yogurt drink and cake and the TV showed the customary Laos Karaoke. A bed on a bus is a really cool experience, the journey flew by we watched a film on our iPod and then listen to music the rest of the night. It can be a bit bumpy when the roads get bad but the south has better surfaces and straighter roads. We aren’t going though mountain ranges now so you haven’t got the tight bends and heavy breaking we did on the trips down. It was fairly easy to sleep on the bus and we only really woke up at 1am when the bus pulled in for a wee stop.
So we are in Pakse, not a lot goes on here, it is a large town surrounded by two rivers the Sedone River and the Mekong. There are local restaurants all along the bank and a few floating restaurants at the edge of the river. They have a cinema and bowling alley which gets very busy on a Saturday night. Everything in Laos gets busy at the weekend, they really take advantage of their days off. Most Sundays you can find large family groups sitting round eating and drinking (Beerlao) with music blaring out from under hired canopies.
We have changed guest houses as the first one we stayed in didn’t have sports channels on the TV. I can’t believe I am saying this, when we came away (6 months today) we thought we would be lucky to find anywhere that had hot water never mind, Hot water, TV with cable channels, fridge, soap, towels, complimentary water and free toilet roll. However Gary has gotten so use to the luxury of Laos that he is getting choosy about what you get with a room....Flash packer!!!
You can get a pretty mean Chicken Tikka Masala in a restaurant called Jasmin here, so good we went back both nights we were here. It couldn’t be helped we sat next door in the internet cafe and the delicious smells kept wafting over making us hungry.
We are leaving today to go to an area called Bolaven Plateau which is meant to have some gorgeous waterfalls and is a big coffee growing area. There is only a local bus that goes half way there and then we have to get off and change to another bus. So where we end up may be interesting, hopefully the Lao conductors will be as helpful as the Thai ones were.
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