I will make this a very quick blog today as the computer I am on is VERY tempermental....which makes me a bit tempermental.
Anyway, we spent our last few days in Laos in the south, Pakse for a night and then down to Si Phan Don, or 4000 islands, an archipelago (Which doesn't really have 4000 islands). We reached Pakse after a ninja bus journey, 10 hours on a bumpy, windy road all the way back to Vientiane (Where we started our Laos adventure) and then a further 10 hours on a sleeping bus overnight. The sleeping bus was pretty cool though! We had a small double bed to share which Kim was certain she was going to fall out of but we both slept surprisingly well and arrived in Pakse at 630 AM. We were whisked off in a moto taxi to our accomodation but had to wait for HOURS to get our room. The guest house was obviously a very popular option and we waited with loads of other people for the current guests to check out so we could lie down and stay still for a while!
The day was spent chilling in Pakse, there wasn't much to do so we visited a local market, sweltered in the heat and had the finest Indian since we left home! I won't say it was as good as mum's (Because that is OF COURSE impossible) but it left my belly feeling VERY happy.
The nexy morning we had our millionth early start in a row and were up at half 6 for our next bus journey down to Don Det (Part of Si Phan Don). Don Det was beautiful, we stayed in a little guesthouse on the river (Which was lovely but a bit grotty, we got what we paid for!) which had hammocks on the porch and a crazy Laos chef/owner/all round guru to look after us! We spent the day exploring and catching the sun. We took a 10 km walk to a neighbouring island, Don Khon, which was reached by the only railway line ever laid in Laos, now just a rocky old bridge, and walked to see a stunning waterfall (The best since Iguazu...didn't quite beat it though!) After a brief rest for a coca cola fix for me and a tiny weird tasting banana for Kim, we headed back to Don Det to swing in the hammock for a while.
The whole place was really quiet and chilled out, almost the opposite to the madness of Vang Vieng, and it was actually really nice to chill out. We had pumpkin burgers (Which I'm certain were actually chicken...there was a distinctly meaty taste to them) and proceeded to walk in the dark to our guesthouse...which we missed because all the lights were off and had to turn back and avoid the rocls and bits of wood strewn around the paths.
We had yet another early start the next day to catch our boat and bus to Cambodia. The boat back to the mainland was pretty hair raising, I didn't think we'd make it across but thankfully we did and arrived in Cambodia without any fuss. We were slightly worried about this border crossing as we'd heard rumours of the Cambodian officials being...well...dodgy, and taking large amounts of "Stamp money " (ie, Foreigner tax) off people crossing over but they were great and only charged us $3 on top of our Visa fee, a big relief.
After a hot and dusty drive to Kompng Cham (Our stopover) we found what we thought was a nice room in a cheap guesthouse and ventured out to find food...but we got scared as we were being stared at by all sorts of dodgy people, coudn't find anything to eat that wasn't once alive and couldn't be arsed to wander aimlessly till we fell down with tiredness...so we went back and played cards! The room we found out was actually covered in all sorts of bug so we had a Deet spraying session in the hope of killing them! We woke up (At stoopid o'clock again) biteless so it obviously worked!
We're now in Siam Reap, home to more temples than you can shake a stick at and the famous Angkor Wat. Hoping to stop here for a few days so I can air my backpack (Which is still getting heavier and more dirty by the hour) and have a well deserved lie in!
That's all from me (Sorry, it was longer than I thought it would be!)