Luang Prabang

We wake up way past sunrise, again. My little plan of getting up to see the monk’s alms procession continue to fail. Generally we don’t do much in Luang Prabang. The infamous sightseeing fatigue has got us long ago, just another temple, another city, another street. The cameras stay in the room most of the time, so do we. Catching up on some blogging, skyping, post-card writing (the postcards are still not sent, and are pressed nicely between the pages in my almost unwritten journal). The city is nice and charming though, and when the horrible midday heat has finished it’s ravaging we venture out, eat at the buffets in the night market, walk through the various stalls.

One day we go to a little theater, we have a faint recollection of someone recommending us to go. There are only a few other spectators there, all tourists. The set-up seems slightly amateurish, but the costumes are cool. They do some dancing, and some kind of singing, we don’t understand a word, but from the pamphlet written in English, we kind of maybe get the story;  the dancers squatting on the scene, scratching their armpits, heads, necks and throats now and then are the monkeys. In the end we settle on the term interesting to describe the show. The lukewarm applause from the small audience makes me feel intensely sorry for the dancers.

We head to the temple on the top of the hill to see the sunset. We don’t see much of the sun though, the smog smudge out the view. Some people biking the other day mentioned some burning landfills, as if the smoke from the slash and burn agriculture wasn’t enough to blanket out the sky and clog up our throats.

Another day we head to Utopia, a bar that collects all the backpackers in the city. It’s set charmingly along the river, but seems almost impossible to find. Everything closes at 23.30, people are herded off to the bowling alley in columns of tuk-tuks, they have somehow managed to bypass the closing rules. I suck at it, as usual, but we have fun – Renate wins.

The Kuang Si waterfall is absolutely wonderfully beautiful. The numerous “waterfalls” we’ve already seen in Thailand couldn’t have prepared us for the sight that meets us. My clown project gets back on track, I have loads of ideas. I feel like taking more pictures again, and then we’re off to see the rest of Laos, with a nice little stomach bug as a departing gift.

         
(1: A jewelry shop, I’d love to have some of those necklaces for photoshoots 2: I did venture into a temple in the end 3: Our most expensive room in Laos, it cost us none the less than 80 000 kip 4: Night market buffet 5: Tuk-tuk to, or from the bowling alley)