Post # 9 – Somewhere between Luang Prabang and Muang Phu Khun

Day 14 1066 days to go. It’s 6.50pm Wednesday 14/12/2011. You know I can definitely do the tourist thing and Luang Prabang was a beautiful place to do it. However this is  what I love the best. I’m sitting around a fire blogging to you under the stars tent’s all set up for what will be a great sleep, and pre dinner snacking on fried coconut chips (a recent find and yum), The chickens have settled for the evening, the goats are occasionally sneezing and the guinea fowl are still having a scratch about. I reached tired o’clock about 5pm this arv amongst the hills between Luang Prabang and Muang Phu Khun. Today’s distance was 58k happy with that with a 15k climb over 800m. But honestly there was little pain as the scenery here is breathtaking literally. I’m amongst the mountains and villages doing the northern wonders cycle in reverse if anyone’s familiar with the lonely planet cycling guide for Laos (Cambodia and Vietnam). It’s the route between Luang Prabang and Vientiane. I passed a french Canadian couple tandem cycling the other way today and they raved about the route continuing down to Paske where they started their 5 weeks cycle. They did some side trips and were keen to share them with me so we’ll see for time but they sound amazing. I packed up this morning then headed to the morning markets for some looking, snack shopping and a bowl of noodle soup for breaky fabulous. Ok I’m going to have to put the chips away. They’re totally morish and disappearing at a rapid rate for what I hoped would last a few days. I offered the little Laos boys who live here and they each took the hugest handful me trying to hide my aghast look. They have been fascinated with me setting up the tent and lighting a fire and quickly got over any shyness they showed earlier when I was taking their photo. Next their lighting the end of sticks and playing swords flashing the glowing end about in the dark. Kids are kids and I’m loving their playfulness. The family here were really kind to let me camp in their back yard area with the animals. Each other family member has visited to say hi, check out my set up and chat about a bit by the fire understanding totally irrelevant I love it. It’s like they’ve paid their respects then leave with a ‘sa bai dii’ all smiles. Once O got up into the hills today the villages started appearing between the kms. The families all seem to work together hauling mostly cut wood of sorts in bundles and strapped to their backs or in a cart. Everyone including the children have their portion to carry. Otherwise it’s working by the home drying food, cooking over an open fire etc. The kids today were particularly welcoming with a big hello and wave. I was blowing them kisses and they all blew one back how cute. They may be familiar with cyclists as it’s a feature ride as I explained but nonetheless friendly and it’s a buzz to be welcomed by such friendly faces. Laos people are definitely different in their manner than Thai. It’s like they’re more cocky or outgoing with an edge of mischief adults included. Even the woman have a glint of cheekiness in their eyes and I like it. Clearly they work very hard but are not short a warm smile and eye contact. I’m passing goats and pigs and of course ndogs and chickens by the road. The pigs are off initially they look like a wild boar but they’re domesticated and it’s a real common meat here. The weather is amazing once the fog lifted from the mountains which was about midday. It colder but. I finished with a 5km decent today and I was cold hands frozen stuff and had to stop to put on layers and full finger gloves. As I would round the bend and come into the sun again it felt so lovely with the sun but in the shadow of the hills chilly big. The french canadian couple said it’s definitely chilly with the elevation which I about 1000metres which isn’t allot but makes a difference. Anothyer sneeze from the goats yay. Having had goats ourselves it was really cool seeing them as many know I’m kinda fond of the awesome creatures. They’re mostly brown and black here unlike my charming cashmere babies but still very cute. Speaking of chilly it is – the fires gone down and it’s time for some dinner and bed- big day tomorrow about 1600 m in ascents starting with a 20km one first up then it’s 70 km in total to Muang Phu Khun where I’km hoping to end up tomorrow night. Fun blogging talk soon x

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About shecyclesolo

If you could dream up the most wildest adventure imaginable what would it be? Between jobs and craving new experience, I decided to indulge the challenge. This is what I conjoured with a promise to come home safe and smiling. I hope you enjoy the 1080 days of stories as much as I will sharing them. "Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you've imagined.' H D Thoreau

2 responses to “Post # 9 – Somewhere between Luang Prabang and Muang Phu Khun”

  1. Linda Hooper says :

    Hiii fried coconut chips dooo sound yummy . It looks very hilly ,or should I say mountainous …..in the photos.xoxo

    • shecyclesolo says :

      hi love he mountains are beuatiful a bit rough for cycling but what goes up must come down yayayayayayayayayayayayayayayayayaya weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee opps tooo fast braaaaaaaaaaake lol 🙂 love to the ladies and give my parents a big hug when theyre next in from daughter #3 x

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