Matt and Cynthia's Odyssey travel blog

Our songthaew on the ferry boat

All aboard... Yes, we all sqeezed in.

Wat Phu Champasak

Cynthia trudging through the rain with a smile

Rain kissed plumeria

Local still using traditional plowing methods

We met Danny around 8am and after breakfast we all went together to catch a songthaew to Champasak. We were all headed to Champasak to see the ancient Khmer ruins of Wat Phu and we intended to spend the night in Champasak after seeing the sights. The songthaew ride was typical, maybe more cramped than usual because the locals came to Pakse to stock up at the local market. The ride took about an hour until we reached a river crossing and then the songthaew drove onto a barge which carried us across the Mekong. Once across, it was a short drive to Champasak and we were put out in front of a guesthouse whose owner appeared to be waiting for us. He was a stocky, jovial Lao man, always laughing after everything he said (no matter what it was). The conversation went something like this: "would you like to see room?" (burst of laughter), "I have room, cheap, cheap." (giggle, giggle), "hungry? have restaurant." (hysterical laughter). We all decided he was hitting the pot too hard but he sure was fun to be around, his laugh was contagious. We did take a couple of rooms and then we ate at the guesthouse riverside restaurant, which was very good. It was now around 1pm so we had to hurry in order to have plenty of daylight time. We rented bikes and began pedaling the 9 kilometers to Wat Phu. It had been raining off and on all day and it continued to do so but it was a very pleasant ride through the countryside. When we finally reached Wat Phu we were not terribly impressed; it was in complete ruinous disrepair. Upon closer examination though, it proved to be a very interesting place full of detailed carvings that hinted at the splendor that once was. Wat Phu covers a vast area so we wandered around for a couple of hours before meeting back up to go to the guesthouse. The bike ride back was nice as well; so nice, in fact, that when we did make it back to the guesthouse we decided to ride around town awhile. It was a nice, very quiet little town with pretty countryside and friendly locals. The three of us had dinner at the guesthouse together and went to sleep early. Danny planned to hang around another day but Matt and I were leaving in the morning.

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