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February 8th 2008
Published: February 16th 2008
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We decided that after a month we would splurge on a slightly above average room. The room was definitely worth the $20 per night as it was clean, roomy, snazzy looking and even had a TV - which would have been great if we could speak fluent Lao. After settling in we headed out for lunch at an Indian place just near our hotel. The food was amazing, so delicious and cheap. Lunch was followed by a walk through the city, until Bianca decided she was feeling a bit odd so wanted to lie down. Back at the hotel she converted into her alter-ego ‘the Spewinator’ once again. As this wasn't the first random spew since food poisoning, it was pretty obvious that the antibiotics prescribed by the pharmacist in Thailand for food poisoning hadn't killed it all, so we booked an appointment for the following day at the Australian Embassy clinic to see a real doctor.

Visiting the embassy doctor really was like being at home in Australia (although you don't go through a metal detector and have your passport checked), they even managed to recreate the wonderful and oh so familiar doctor visit experience by making you wait long beyond your real appointment time, employing a screaming baby and scattering trashy magazines from another era throughout the waiting room. This visit made us both happy to be Australian! Especially as the antibiotics prescribed fixed Bianca up overnight.

As Bianca was feeling much better we used our final day in Vientiane to do some sightseeing. We started at a reasonable hour and walked to That Dam Pagoda which is in the middle of a roundabout. That Dam was once covered in gold, however it was all stolen by the Thai's in about 1827. From here we walked to Patuxai, which resembles the Arc de Triomphe in Paris although it was never finished. We both loved the sign at the bottom describing it as a "concrete monster". We then walked to the main market in Vientiane, Talat Sao. It wasn't particularly impressive although Scott picked up some tourist t-shirts and Bianca found some shoes. After the market we went shopping along the riverfront in an effort to get rid of our Kip. Scott ended up with a jumper (handy in 30+ degree weather). For dinner we went to the riverfront, and ordered a ridiculous amount of food including 'Laap' - a traditional Lao dish (a salad of mince meat and mint)...which was too dry and too minty.

The following morning we got up at 4:30am (once more) and headed to the airport for our flight to Siem Reap, Cambodia. Once we had checked in we had to wait for the customs guys to wake up before we could go any further. Should have stayed in bed another hour..

Additional photos below
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Way to talk it upWay to talk it up
Way to talk it up

'From a closer distance, it appears even less impressive, like a monster of concrete'

All we do is walk up stairs

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