Learning to Drive... a motorbike!

Pakxe Travel Blog

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Woke up well fricking early and paid and got on a Sawngthaew (think converted pick up truck with benches that move like a bucking buffalo thing) The most adventurous uncomfortable journey to date. For 2 hours we were getting thrown about and dusted on. On the other side of the river was Route 13, practically the only decent road in Laos. But all in the name of saving 10,000 kip ewach (for the ferry- which made sense since the sawngthaew was only 20,000K) we stuck to the bumpy dirt-track road. Got to Pakse by about 9am (still well early). Found a room in Lan Kham or something about the noodle shop for 60,000L. Went to te bank and got loads of hundred thousands kips in exchange for like 50 quid. Spent the rest of the day following monks and buying stationery and then had the idea of renting a motorbike to go around the Boloven Plateau on, so tried asking the tuk-tuk guys to teach us how to ride one but they didn't understand. We found a whitey on a bikey and asked him and he showed us the basics and then we kept seeing him after (as well as the Aussie from Champasak) until we actually had the guts to rent one and then learnt in the back car park of our hotel and it was fairly easy. Just vroom vroom on the accelerator and balance like on a bicycle. Turning was REALLY hard at first but then we went to a different car park and then finally a back-side-street and practiced our turns there. Then we tried it with each other on the back and was really wobbily at first but soon got the hang of it. Spent the rest of the night whizzing around the roads of Pakse until we felt confident enough for the next three days and then went home and it started pouring down like a monsoon even though it's the (bone) dry season.
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photo by: dutch_duke