When travelling overland this fork gets very hungry.
And maybe a wee grumpy.
So riding the Vientiane-Luang Prabang ‘VIP’ bus for 11 hours was a challenge, and I should have known better.
‘Basic air-con coach’ (US$18) would have been a far more accurate description of the ride, Hobbit-sized rolling outhouse included.
However, the Luang Prabang roadhouse experience reminded me why it was worth it.
Personal highlight was the nosebleed pate sandwich starting from 10,000 kip (US$1.50), only twice the cost of using the toilet.
I choose to travel overland again to remember Claude Vincent, who took me same way just months before this happened.
Our nerves-of-steel VIP coach driver took the same older high elevation, narrow two-lane track one rather than the newer ‘bypass’ route.
The tarmac might have been paved and some of the pot holes fixed, but it still felt like a good kidney punch to me.
It remains a twisty, challenging high-altitude pas de deux between mountain and machine that takes your breath away.
And the state-owed Lao travel agents that lie about the ‘VIP’ bus (made in China 20 years ago) and quality travel experience are greedy pricks.
So that made the one-way journey more than enough. This fork flew back to Vientiane in under an hour.