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Published: July 18th 2006
We got to Vang Vieng and went looking for a Guesthouse, we soon came across a new looking guesthouse called 'Babylon', the owner was a Londoner called Nic. The downstairs was great it had a free pool table and a great lounging area where you could put on whatever DVD you wanted. Our first day it rained all day so this guesthouse was great. we went to check out the river as Vang Vieng was famous for river tubing, the river however was flooded and extremely fast flowing - tubing was definately cancelled which was a little dissappointing. The next day however the sun came out and the river went down alot, it was still fast flowing though. Where it usually takes 3 hours to get down it, it would take us about 45 minutes! We thought it was still too dangerous and by this point we had met up with Martin, Simon, Kelvin, Alex and Jen off the boat who were also unsure whether to go. Whilst we had breakfast Nic came and sat with us, he reckoned the river was 'safe enough' and said he would come with us. We all went to get ready and met back
downstairs by which point patriotic Nic had his Trilby hat on and Union Jack flag to take with him! We were given the worst life jackets i've ever seen, there wasn't enough so Ollie went with out (it's good he is a good swimmer)! A tuk tuk took us up the river, we each got our tubes and went to the rivers edge. We were all reluctant to get in to the brown murky water as it looked so fast flowing, crazy Nic went straight in with his flag....once we got over the cold we started floating down the river, it was actually quite relaxing. A few of us got caught in an eddy which kept us going round and round, we couldn't get back into the flow of the main river - which was a laugh. We soon got to the first bar en route, you had to be quick getting to the side because if you missed it there was no way you could get back. Unfortunatley Martin, Ol & I got to the side too early we just about managed to get up the slimey, muddy riverbank but then was parted from the bar by a fence
Stuck in the mud!!
You would think Ol would help but instead he took a photo!
of barbed wire. I think others may have done the same thing because we managed to squeeze through a slack piece of fence. We finally got to the others and Ol went off to get our drinks, Alex started telling us of the water snake that had come swimming up to him and how he had to do a yoga move on his tube to get out of the water!!! I asked everyone not to say anything to Ol as he has quite a bad fear of snakes! I have to say i was a little worried about going back in!!We stopped at a further 2 bars along the way, we all managed to make it to the end safe and sound, it was so much fun. Later we went back to the guesthouse and Nic arranged a game of killer on the pool table - basically if you potted or didn't pot your ball you had to down tiger whiskey either way!! The more Ol drank the worse he got, however i managed to pot all the balls on my go and potted the black, this meant i won the game and managed to down the most shots of
whiskey!!! However i had to sober myself up at the end of the night so i could put parraletic ol to bed - bless him!! We got up the next day & to Ol's annoyance i felt fine but he felt fragile. We just chilled at the guesthouse with the others but Nic who had sort of turned into our surrogate mom told us it was a lovely day and to hire some bikes and basically get lost for the day. So we went off on our hire bikes on the 7 km ride towards the caves - the scenery was absolutley amazing, we had some fun getting throught the foot deep mud, at the caves there was a really deep river to swim and jump into. The heavens opened and we had a massive thunder storm but we carried on travelling regardless. We had to give the inside of the caves a miss as it had become too slippy. By the time we got back to the town we were covered in mud and we loved it. That night we all went for a fantastic curry, we were well impressed with the food here. We loved Vang Vieng and
we were so glad we went there. We all booked a minibus for the next day to Vientiene where we would all go our seperate ways - the worst part about travelling i'm afraid!
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