The road ahead

Vientiane Travel Blog

 › entry 42 of 100 › view all entries
Next up: Vietnam.

That was the plan, anyway. Enter Vietnam somewhere near the centre of the country, make my way up to Hanoi in the north and then back to Laos in the remote north-east of the country. But I couldn't raise the enthusiasm.

There was no good reason for this absence of excitement. There were plenty of crap reasons: the Vietnamese New Year would be in full swing when I arrived, and tickets for public transport would be like gold dust; the LP made the country sound like a pain in the arse; it just seemed like more of the same; if I skipped the country I could get to the Thai beaches three weeks earlier; my time and money would be better spent elsewhere. A couple of my imaginary internet buddies warned me off, too. One was in Vietman at the time; he'd been threatened with an iron bar at the border and was heartily sick of the place. One had been a few years before and found it full of bossy communists and expat weirdos. She'd taken a bus out of the country and reckoned everyone on board had cheered "when we entered fabulous stoned Cambodia."

So I made a decision. Instead of going to Vietnam, I'd cross the border into Thailand, spend the night in the Thai border town, then come back into Laos for another month. Yeah! Then Cambodia. Then the south of Thailand. And after that - my feverish imagination working flat out - the middle east was mine. I had a flight to Amman booked for the third of April, which I could postpone indefinitely. My flight back to London was on the tenth but I was going to skip that, make my way north through Syria and Turkey into eastern Europe, and get a cheap flight home from there. Overland from Amman to Prague: it's enough to send shivers down the spine.

That's not how it worked out, though.
Biedjee says:
Sorry to see you giving Vietnam a pass, mate. Though far from being my favourite country in the world I must say some of the scenery was absolutely amazing and the food is just tremendous. Every city has its own cuisine - it's gourmet heaven!

Did you end up going to Cambodia in the end? It's not really clear from your blog. After Laos Cambodia is my favourite country in SE Asia.

Looking forward to reading the rest of your blogs.
Posted on: Mar 15, 2008
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