SICK LAOS MONKEY

Discussion in 'Laos Road Trip Reports' started by pirip, Apr 21, 2004.

  1. pirip

    pirip Active Member

    I GOT BACK FROM THIS LATEST TRIP AROUND THE APRIL 1ST, SO A LITTLE OUT OF DATE, AFTER JUST RECOVERING ENOUGH FROM FRIENDS WEDDING AND SONGRAN ETC TO SIT IN FRONT OF COMPUTER FOR MORE THAN 3/4 MINS!

    NOT TOO MUCH TO REPORT BECAUSE THIS TRIP WAS A DISASTER FROM THE WORD GO!

    ONLY ENDED UP DOING ROADS THAT I ALREADY RODE ON THE LAST TRIP!

    ARRIVED CHIANG KHONG AFTER A LATE RUN TOO THATON THE PREVIOUS NIGHT (STAYING AT "GARDEN HOME" G/H) AND THEN VIA
    COMING DOWN INTO C.K. I THINK A LOT NICER RIDE THAN 107/118 ETC AND ONLY A LITTLE BIT MORE TIME CONSUMING IF YOUR NOT IN TOO MUCH OF A RUSH (AS I USUALY AM).
    USTOMS ON THE THAI SIDE WAS ALL GOING O.K. UNTIL THE BOSS DECIDED TO TAKE OVER.
    HE WAS FRIENDLY ENOUGH BUT SEEMED CONFUSED AS TO WHY I HAD NO NUMBER PLATE.
    HE MADE ME FILL OUT THE CUSTOMS FORM MYSELF BUT NOTICED REGISTRATION LEFT BLANK, BUT AFTER 10MINS OF SWEATING AND SMILING HE PASSED IT OVER WITH A LOT OF MUTTERING!

    AT IMMIGRATION I INFORMED THEM I HAD A BIKE, BUT THEY DIDNT PRODUCE THE PAPERWORK I HAD TO FILL OUT LAST TIME. (A MISTAKE AS ON RETURNING, THEY STICHED ME FOR 100 B FOR NOT HAVING THIS PAPERWORK, SO ITS BEST TO GET IT DONE!)

    AGAIN TRIED THE CAR FERRY WITH NO LUCK. GOT A CANOE, BUT THEN EVERYONE DISSAPEARED LEAVING ME WITH ONE OLD GUY RUNNING DOWN HIS LAST FEW DAYS BEFORE RETIREMENT!
    I HAD TOO STRADLE THE BIKE FREESTANDING AND BALENCE ALL THE WAY ACROSS TO LAOS CUSTOMS!
    I STRONGLY DO NOT RECOMEND THIS (IT ALWAYS LOOKS SO EASY!)
    I FIND IT HARD ENOUGH TO BALENCE ON HARD GROUND, SO ACROSS THE MEKONG MY LEG DECIDES TO START SHAKING VIOLENTLY AND THE BIKE WOBBLING WITH EVERY SMALL RIPPLE OF THE WATER!
    THIS WAS IT, I CONVINCED MYSELF MY YEARS OF GOOD LUCK AND BLAGGING ON THESE TRIPS HAD FINNALY COME TO AN END AND MYSELF, BIKE AND BELONGINGS WERE ABOUT TO END UP IN THE MEKONG (THE BOAT DRIVER DIDNT SEEM TO MIND, HE LOOKED LIKE HE HAD HAD A GOOD LIFE) BUT FOR WHAT SEEMED LIKE AN ETERNITY THE BOAT DRIFTED CLOSER TO DRY LAND AND WE EVENTUALY MADE IT!!!! THEN HAD TO TIP SOME LAO BODS TO HELP PULL IT OUT OF THE BOAT.

    ARRIVED AROUND 4.30, BUT THEY HAD CLOSED ALREADY FOR AN EARLY DRINK!
    THEN LIKE THE MONKEY IAM, I FORGOT TO GO IMMIGRATION, (MIND STILL IN SHOCK FROM THE BOAT!) CHECKED STRAGHT INTO 'SABIDEE G/H' AND WENT FOR A SUNSET BEER LAO, EVEN WATCHING THE COMINGS AND GOINGS ACROSS THE WAY AT IMMGRATION! (OOOH!)
    THE NEXT MORNING WENT TO IMMI AND TOLD THEM I HAD ARRIVED AND THEY WERE SHUT......THIS DIDNT WORK AND I GOT SENT BACK OVER THE RIVER TO GET RE-STAMPED IN FOR TODAY!
    AFTER MUCH RUBBING OF THE CHIN I WAS INFORMED A 100B WOULD COVER THE INK COST TO CROSS OUT THE 16 AND PUT 17!
    ANOTHER 20B BACK OVER THE RIVER AND FINNALY GOT STAMPED INTO LAOS!
    CUSTOMS WAS EXCELLENT IN AND OUT IN 5 MINS, BUT ONLY GIVEN 7 DAYS THIS TIME.

    DIDNT LEAVE UNTIL 12.00, SO IT LOOKED LIKE ANOTHER NIGHT ARRIVAL INTO LUANG NAM THA.
    THE DIRT ROAD THERE DIDNT SEEM TOO BAD THIS TIME, BUT A LOT DUSTIER, BUT THE ADVANTAGE OF NOT MANY MINING TRUCKS THIS TIME.
    BEGAN TO FEEL VERY ILL AND MY BONES WERE ACHEING ALL OVER AND MY HEAD WAS BURNING UP!
    HALF BELIEVED THIS WAS DUE TO THE WELCOME BACK TO BEER LAO PARTY LAST NIGHT, BUT SOON REALISED IT WAS MORE SEVERE!
    AFTER VIENG PHOUKHA, WHEN THE ROAD GETS PROGRESIVELY WORSE AND THE BUMPS PROGRESIVELY HARDER EVERY STEP OF THE WAY WAS AGONY, BUT I KEPT GOING WITHOUT STOPPING TRYING TO BEAT THE LIGHT!
    GOT TO HARD SURFACE JUST AS I WAS LOSING LIGHT AND MADE IT AROUND 6.30PM

    COLAPSED IN THE G.H. AND TOOK MY TEMPERATURE.... 40 DEGREES!
    NEXT DAY WENT TO THE WORLD RENOUNED CENTRE OF EXCREMENT 'LUANG NAM THA HOSPITAL' !
    FRIENDLY PEOPLE BUT SOLD ME DUFF DRUGS (OBVIOUSLY CHINESE FAKES!) AS SPENT THE NEXT THREE DAYS WITH MY THROAT ALMOST COMPLETELY CLOSED UP AND EVEN A DROP OF WATER WAS AGONY TOO SWALLOW AND THE DRUGS HAD FECK ALL EFFECT!

    DECIDED TO BITE THE BULLET AND RIDE DOWN TO LUANG PRABANG, WHERE I COULD AT LEAST GET A BETTER PLACE TOO STAY AND BETTER DRUGS AND FOOD ETC AND GET THE FIANCEE TO GET THE BUS UP FROM KASI AND TAKE CARE OF HER MAN (IN EVERY WAY!)
    FIRST HAD TO REPAIR MY LUGGAGE RACK WHICH HAD SNAPPED OFF ALONG THE DIRT ROAD AND WAS BARELY HANGING ON.
    LUCKILY THE GITS THAT HAD BEEN WAKING ME UP FOR THE LAST 3 MORNINGS AT 6.30 AM AT THE BACK OF THE G/H WERE LUCKILY WELDERS, AMONG OTHER THINGS.

    1 HR LATER AND 30,000 KIP POORER (BUT AN EXCELLENT JOB!) I WAS OFF AT LAST!
    ROAD CONDITION SAME AS IN LAST REPORT, EXCEPT NOW THERE IS EXTENSIVE ROAD REPAIRS GOING ON BETWEEN UDOM XAI AND PAK MONG.

    ARRIVED AT 'HOXIENG G/H' (DOWN THE SOI NEXT TO THE 'MAJO' COFFEE SHOP.
    HIGHLY RECOMENDED. ROOMS $6 - $8 AND THE FAMILY VERY HELPFUL AND LOOKED AFTER ME (BRINGING ME FOOD, GETTING MY DRUGS ETC) FOR THE WHOLE WEEK OR SO I WAS THERE!
    CLEARED UP IN 3/4 DAYS AND MANAGED TO RIDE TO THE KWANG XI WATERFULL FOR THE DAY AND PIG OUT AT NASEEMS ETC.

    WE RODE DOWN TO KASI WHERE THERE IS UNTOLD BURNING AND THE RODE GETS COVERED IN THICK SMOKE!
    IN PHOU KHOUN A FIRE UP A GRASSY BANK TOOK A HOUSE WITH IT AND VILLAGERS WERE FRANTICALLY TRYING TO PUT IT OUT, BUT IT WAS LIKE URINATING IN A VOLCANOE!
    THE PLACE RESEMBLED A WAR ZONE AT TIMES WITH HUGE AMOUNTS OF FORESTATION CUT DOWN AND BURNT!

    ONE NIGHT IN VANG VIENG AND A SMALL SIDE TRIP TOO NONG KHIAW AND HAD TO RETURN TO MEET FRIENDS ARRIVING IN C.MAI FROM ENGLAND!
    DIDNT MANAGE TO DO THE EXPLORING AROUND THE LUANG PRABANG DIRT ROADS AS INTENDED, NOR THE TRY THE WAY BACK VIA XAYABOURY!
    ALL IN ALL I WAS GLAD TO GET BACK AND VOWED TO HANG UP MY HELMET FOR A WHILE AND GIVE MY POOR OL' ARSE A REST!
    THE BIKE WAS FEELING PISSED OFF ASWELL AND GAVE ME LOSS OF POWER PROBLEMS ON THE WAY BACK FROM CHIANG KHONG!

    CUSTOMS ALRIGHT ON BOTH SIDES AND MADE IT BACK!
     
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