Never regret there is no toilette on the bus
Be warned against traveling by bus in Laos… and be even more curious to try it out!
What a jimmy, the switchbacks and a loo have in common? Ask the bus driver or read the article 🙂
In Laos the roads are difficult to travel…to say the least .
It doesn’t matter if you decide to give them a chance on a bike, on a scooter or by bus. And yet their their beauty is worth to pay a bumpy price.
This is an exemplary collection of easy highways but do not let them mislead you!
Now imagine it’s raining…cats and dogs.
The Laotian buses set in motion on these roads are even more difficult to survive for a castaway from Europe or US.
If you’ve been to India you may feel what I refer to. If you haven’t been there yet than probably there is no much difference if you taste India or Laos first.
After Cambia I thought that nothing would amaze me more…how wrong was I!
The distance between Luang Prabang and Vientiane is less than 350 km.
In Europe it should take no more than 3 hours…in Poland no more than 5…in Laos is never less than 12 hours and if you are extremely lucky – do not count on that scenario! – around 8.
That’s why I decided to visit Vang Vieng….well, basically. To be honest I got additional reason a severe diarrhoea which made me almost laid down in the hospital. I didn’t expect to survive more than 2 hours without a toilette. Precisely, that’s was in the beginning when my condition seemed quite goodish. By the time I arrived to Vang Vieng the bathroom was my favourite shrine and relax space which I didn’t leave for a single moment. But the day before staying at the bus station in Luang Prabang I hadn’t expect that chain reaction. When I saw the vehicle which was supposed to endure 12 hours trip, it just occurred to me that the chances are 50/50.
I definitely decided to jump on one of those below. They had the remote chances to reach Vang Vieng (180 km, 6 hours).
I found them less motley and more minimalistic inside.
This one was taken on the road.
I asked twice about
a loo on the board.
– Yes, there is always one. Here is your free meal voucher – replied politely the man at the desk.
– Is everything all right with this WC? – somehow I got paranoid. He gave me this dubious look so I added – I mean isn’t in service, is it?
I’ve already been hanging around in Laos for about a couple of weeks so I knew it was reasonable to rechecked the details.
– Sometimes it is. – He smiled.
I didn’t like that answer though his smile appeared to be sincere….and promising that not this time.
– Where is the bus? Perhaps I ask the driver – I persist to get the whole picture.
– It’s not ready yet. It will come soon.
And it did arrive…thirty minutes later. Meanwhile I visit the Ladies twice.
– Is there a toilette on the bus? – I asked the grimy driver with a jimmy and a monkey wrench in his hand.
– Broken. Today no service.
In answer to that dictum I ran to the lavatory for the third time hopping that the bus won’t leave with my luggage and without me.
– Then you will have to stop on the way – I explained my escape from that conversation. – I, myself in person – I pointed at my belly – stomach problem. I will need a toilette. I hope not every 5 minutes – I added in my thoughts.
– Ok, ok. No problem. You no problem. Toilette problem.
– Yes – I agreed and took my place in the green and pretty decent bus nicely ornamented bus suggesting a race speed combined with a decadent savour of comfort.
We hit the road and I started my prayers to Buddha asking for a healthy next hour.
And he gifted me this scenery instead.
Probably to distract my attention of the mundane worries.
On the way we stopped for a lunch in this location.
The lunch was remotely as far fascinating as the view
so I spent my time of this 30 minutes break just dividing it by going to the loo (twice, just in case) and admiring the landscape.
When everyone had finished their meal (I’ve forgotten to mention that the carnivores had more options and the bigger choice) we jumped on the bus again…but the engine didn’t start. Only then did I realize what for the driver needed to carry a jimmy, monkey wretch, several screwdrivers and the whole set of other dangerous utensils.
I used that moment…for Ladies.
The twelve years old lavatory attendant, by guess, glanced at me with compassion giving up collecting the fee and on my way back he handed me a small bottle of water miming that I should drink to prevent dehydration.
Sipping the liquid slowly I was looking through the window
when the weather suddenly changed…
condemning me to such views.
The rain during the road was utterly rewarded by what I saw finally and luckily reaching Vang Vieng.
Sometimes a diarrhea is quite a handy guide…it leads you to the places you normally would skip. It would be such a pity if I were totally healthy on that day of making decision.
Autor: Dominika Sidorowicz
Piszcie do mnie w sprawie przygód! 🙂