Day 18 Jan 15th 2014
Not another elephant ride? I felt a little over Laos. We have seen so many villages and so many farmers..... it is another planet here - except when you are in a hotel like the ones we stay in. Off we went. It is a small show here 5 mature elephants and one tiny 700 kg baby 2 or 3 years old. We rode a bull. Great creature. Watched one get washed and thought then it was time to go back to our room. Some mechanical engineering students from Germany then arrived. They were on exchange to a uni in China and were having a holiday break in Laos. They were taking the baby elephant for a walk as the elephant contact they had did not come to the price of a ride. We wandered off with them into the bush. Baby elephants can walk up VERY steep hills and we had trouble keeping up with it. At one point I was sure Chris was going to topple back on me. We found an open patch to sit and talk while baby ate nearby. I wandered off and on coming back they said I had scarred a snake off. No idea- I thought they were joking. We talked for a while, swapped stories and mused on the future of Laos. We are all incredibly knowledgeable on how Laos can solve its problems!
We walked thru the village that is either side of the road into Pak Ben. People continue to exist day to day but here the tourists have an influence. You can buy from a French bakery all sorts of croissants. The afternoon we relaxed. I am still getting used to relaxing. On other holidays we seem to be more on the go learning about the culture and history of the country we are visiting. Here we seem to have seen most of the things Laos has to offer so I can read a book and sit and think. Or maybe just sit. This hotel is a very pleasant place to do that.
My biggest frustration at the moment is technology. The ipad does not want to do what I tell it.I will have to find an insrtuction book on deleting photos .... or a person born this century. It wants more space but I can't get rid of some that were on it before we left. Ah the trials of travel.
Thanks for reading