Tuesday, 15 October 2013


I think it must have been around March by now, Mon’s mum and daughter had gone to Udon Thani with Wit and we flew up to meet them.  It was Mon’s first time on a plane and I thought she was going to break my hand with her grip, I didn’t want to tell her but it was actually a shitty flight and had me worried most of the way there.  But we made it safely somehow and spent a few days with her family before making the journey across the border at Nong Khai into Laos as my visa had nearly expired.  I had actually managed to stay an extra 6 weeks with a little Police bribery, but it was time to leave.

The whole border crossing over the Thai-Laos Friendship Bridge was a little confusing, but we managed and now found ourselves in a ‘taxi’ on the way to Vientiane, the capital city only 22km away from the border.  As Mon didn’t have a passport she entered Laos on a 3 day entry permit which the Thai’s can get, but she overstayed and we had one last week together, the fine being something trivial like $20.

  I won’t go into the details here, but after weeks of discussing it we had decided it would be too hard to continue the relationship after I left.  I thought going into it I could travel away for a month at a time and base myself in Thailand, but we soon realized that wasn’t going to cut it.  It was a very strange feeling that last week but we agreed to make the most of what time we had left, though it was still very difficult knowing we wouldn’t see each other for at least a few months, if ever.  We were in constant contact for months and still keep in touch today, but not on the same level as it was

Not much to report from Laos, I didn’t have time to explore further north but will do upon my return, the capital Vientiane really didn’t do much for me but considering everything that was going on, perhaps it was just me.  I will investigate again, though I doubt my opinion will change.  I thought it was extremely boring and was merely a jumping off point for the seemingly huge contingent of backpackers coming into Laos. 

From here I flew to Jakarta for my first visit, and I have to say, I liked it.  Due directly to the people I met of course, take them out of the equation and it definitely would not have been the same experience. Though I still ventured out alone a lot and had a great time.  Once again, being prepared to approach people and chat goes a long way.  Some of the nightlife stories I won’t post about here, but there are sure as hell some crazy places in Jakarta, even for somebody that had spent quite a bit of time in Pattaya, a notorious party town, it was a little surprising.

My laptop crapped out in Jakarta though and I was at the mercy of internet cafes until I returned to Australia, I had 1 week left and for some reason I decided to hit Bali on my way home.  I was pretty much over it the first night I went out, after all the travelling I had done I just didn’t seem to belong here anymore.  I was still in travel mode but everybody else was in 2 week party, lay by the pool mode.  If I hadn’t already booked my ticket home I would have possibly bolted after a couple of days.  Once again though, being forced to stay and meeting the right people saved the day and by the time I had to leave, I didn’t want to!