Please come back tomorrow........
Trip Start Sep 28, 2009
92Trip End Apr 22, 2011
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We slept like babies on the overnight sleeper bus, they really are the best way to travel. Having arrived back in Vientiane at 6am we checked back into the same hostel again. It is Monday and the Australian Embassy is still closed for Easter Holidays so the only task we had to do on this day is go to the Immigration office to get a Loss Record, which is a bit of paper to say we are ok to be in the country even though our visa has run out. We arrived at the offices of the immigration hot and dripping with sweat only to find it also was closed for a bank holiday (one of their made up ones). Its 10am in the morning and already the heat is unbearable. There wasn't much more we could do at this point without speaking to the Australian embassy the next day.
We thought we would seek out the Australian Embassy as it wasn't too far away from us and would save a bit of time the next day if we knew where we had to go. It has been our misfortune throughout our travels that every time we go to an Embassy they have up and moved location and this time was no different. We turned up at a sad empty looking building with the Australian Embassy sign removed jut leaving the sun bleached silhouette behind. As we stood in amazement that this has happen to us again...was it a conspiracy... a helpful chap came over and informed us that the Embassy have moved 4km away and showed us on the map.
The next morning we got up early and arrived at the Embassy gates for 8am. At 8.30am they let us in and we spoke to a very nice lady who talked us through the process and answered all our questions. It seems we have to go to Bangkok to visit the British Embassy and start the paperwork for our new passport. However to get to Thailand we need to get an emergency passport and a Thai visa to get us over the border. We also need to go back to Immigration to get our Loss Record so we are not deported.
We flagged down a Tuk Tuk who took us to the Immigration office, which was a tatty looking building with lots of local just milling around. We went up to the 3rd floor and knocked on the door. Three official looking men sat behind desks squeezed into a tiny room with just 3 seats along the wall for us to sit on. They asked us a bunch of questions and had us fill out a form. They TV on one of the desks was showing the Bangkok rally’s and they laugh at me because I had a red top on so I must be in support of them. I think we then became known as the Red topped Falang as the photo’s we handed in for our forms also had us in red tops...they found this very funny.
The forms wouldn’t be ready until the next day so we had to come back in the morning. We also visited the City Tourist Police while we had time so we could report the theft to them and get an official police report for our insurance, they too had us coming back the next morning. With time to kill we hit the coffee shop to take advantage of the Air con and delicious fruit shakes.
Another early morning and another four government buildings to visit, its 8am and the temperature is already in the 30’s. We collect our Loss record and the Police report and jump in a TukTuk for the Consular Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Here we get a temporary passport, or in this case a bit of paper that says it’s a temporary passport. We hand all the paperwork in and get told to come back a 2pm. With four hours to kill we headed back to the coffee shop for some more fantastic fruit shakes and lovely air con.
We collect the temporary passports and walked round the corner to the Thai Embassy to beg for a visa in to their country. However they wouldn’t accept applications in the afternoon so we had to come back the next morning.
Thursday morning 8am we pull up outside the Thai Embassy, thinking we might get served quickly if we turn up early.....funny so did the 100 people in the queue before us. Two and a half hours later we handed our applications in only to be told ....yes that’s right....come back tomorrow they will be ready at 1pm. At least we get a sleep in.
Our final day in Laos went smoothly, we collected our Thai Visas without any hic-cups and spent the day doing a few final chores. We have booked the overnight bus for Friday night. We have to be outside the gates of the British Embassy at 8am on Monday morning as they are about to have a 3 day holiday for Thai New Years, what great timing. Wish us luck.
Despite all the upset, hassle and sadness we have had over the last week, we have actually loved Laos and the Laos people and would recommend that you all visit this country before tourist turns it into another Thailand. It is truly beautiful.
As we are cameraless at the moment here are a few of our favourite pictures from Laos.
Please feel free to remark on any of the pictures or leave us a message by clicking the comment button below the photo gallery.