Opium shake?

Trip Start Oct 27, 2008
Trip End Oct 27, 2009

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Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Sam: Oh Vang vieng. It is by far the most backpacker populated place we've been to. It is tiny here just one main road with all the bars showing friends around the clock and selling marijuana, opium, magic mushroom shakes, pizzas, garlic bread, etc etc. It is so unbelivably openly available. Strange little place indeed. It's also easy to get away from that with bikes, we cycled 20 miles today and found caves, lagoons, and little villages. Would have been lovely only if Giles hadn't broken his toe (I'll let him explain) or i was actually able to go inside caves. I kept venturing inside but at the point it gets pitch black dark and there is no space to move and you have to crawl on your belly i just couldn't do it and kept running out. It is actually very claustrophobic. The lao dude who sold us tickets to one cave found this hilarious, so i promised him ill be back tomorrow to try again. I'll show him.

Must mention tubing. A must do in Vang vieng. Simply you sit in a tube and float along the river while stopping at every makeshift bar along the river with rope swings and slides included. Giles tried the slide and fell off in the strangest manner it was hilarious, not so much when he moaned all day about his bruising. So we started about 10am and came to the end at 5pm, considering the part of the river we tubed down was only about 2km we were pretty drunk by the end.

Vang vieng... Beautiful, crazy, full of stoned backpackers and buckets of whisky cocktails. Its been fun but we are moving on in 2-3 days before i really start to hate it! 

Giles:  Firstly I dind't fall off the slide, but by the time you reach the end youre going pretty fast and as it arches upward i flew for a good few seconds (amazingly Sam managed a good picture of this) and landed on my back.  Big slapping stinger, red for the rest of the day, which has now developed into the biggest bruise I've ever seen or had.  Again, the pictures are there but I don't think they'll be uploaded!  Secondly, I haven't broken my toe.  Although the toe nail did get ripped off, thanks to Sam!  She was cyclign across one of the most dodgy bridges Laos has to offer, like it's straight from an Indiana Jones movie where every other lateral plank is missing or loose, and as she slowed down I wasn't ready for that so came to a complete stop, tried to get my footing but brought my foot down between two planks, the gap big enough for my large foot, bulbous big toe, but unfortunately not my bulbous big toe's nail!  Anyway, Mum I'm perfectly fine so don't worry, but tomorrow I'm sure Sam will have fun getting stuck down the potholes whilst caving - pictures first, support and help second!

Been up to a few things so far in this place, it's very tourist orientated but watching "Friends" to fill in the odd gap has been a nice change.  The cycling today was a bit hellish, we were told 15km, I didn't realise that's pretty much ten miles so we both agreed on bicycles over the motorbikes.  Halfway through it dawned on us just how far we had to go.  Woudl have been a challenge on a pair of good mounatin bikes, but the ones we got were the rustiest, friction clad ones in the world.  Even goign downhill with the wind behind us we had to peddle as the bloody things just wanted to come to a complete standstill.  But we endured!  And we found a few caves that were very dark, then pitchblack, so we'll conquer those tomorrow, only via motorbike and not mountain bike (yes we'll be wearing helmets Mum!).

Tubing was good fun, and this is what puts Vang Vieng on the map.  Quite sad really considering Laos is such a peaceful laid back place that somethign liek this is what peopel talk about, over the countrie's cultures and sights.  But it is good fun and we added to the situation.  Just floating down, in the sun, chatting to a lot of strangers all as happy as us (without narcotics) and just such a great atmosphere all round.  One bar even had a baby monkey resident!  Although the little thing was chained up, it still found it funny enough to steal our camera case and climb it's pole it was chained too whilst laughing.  Literally it laughed.  A wad of sticky rice thrown on the floor and it lost interest int he camera case though.  Good times though.

Much love, Gam and Siles xxx
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mumdadjosh on

Opium shake

redwine286 on

Dodgy Asian bikes.......
What is it with you two and dodgy Asian bikes??? Auntie Sue is very jealous of tubing and sunshine and buckets of alcohol and chilling in hammocks! Keep on writing these fantastic blogs, and I may be tempted to fly out and join you!!

It's absolutely freezing here! But I don't suppose you care, as you lay on some exotic beach drinking exotic cocktails - bah humbug!!! ;-)

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