I'm far away from Vang Vieng already, but I've been too far from a good and cheap internet connection, so there is a little delay:)
Vang Vieng is the biggest backpacker hangout and party mecca in Laos. It really felt ridiculous after getting painfully familiar with the real history of the country. Bars after bars after bars all showing American comedies, mostly Friends. Western food everywhere. People going tubing on the river to go to even more bars, getting s***ty-ass drunk and on drugs too, obviously. I can imagine this being a nice place 5 or 10 years ago (it's beautiful with the river and the mountains and all), but the word has gone out and it's way too much. This is the kind of place that could be anywhere in the world. It doesn't matter it's here.
Anyway I arrived with Chris and Johannes, had dinner, walked around and ended up having a very chilled night hanging out in a random bar with this Scottish guy who was mountainbiking around Asia. The next day Chris was off to Vientiane, Johannes and I rented the crappiest mountainbikes imaginable and went out of town. We spent quite a lot of time swimming at the Blue Lagoon, was sweeeet. There was also a cave to explore. The bikeride was fun and the scenery really beautiful, and all the local kids were high-fiving us and going "sabai-deeeee" as we passed them. Aww.
After coming back we ran into Henk and Jack, so we spent the evening with them. I wasn't quite able to get into the mood of everyone else (how could I when they were all a couple of days ahead of me with their wastedness), Johannes was feeling the same, so we didn't stay out too late. And we never went tubing which is the thing to do here, but I couldn't help feeling very turned off when I saw the people who were going for it sitting in the tuktuks. Seemed like a bunch of idiots! And of course we're above that:P
Next morning we took an early bus to Vientiane, nothing much to say. Johannes headed towards Bangkok and I didn't feel like staying in the dusty city which looked French plus 100 degrees, so I booked a bus towards the south for the same night. Next entry will be about 4000 Islands, then!