Somehow managed to get the crew up ready to head off to the port to catch the boat down to Si Phan Don. We all jumped in a Songthaew and got to the port to find out that their were no boats for a couple of days heading that way, so we just hired the driver of the Songthaew to tkae us for about 50000 Kip.
That trip took about an 2 hours and then we had to jump on a boat to take usover to the biggest of 4000 islands called Don Khong. Stopped here for some grub then found some bloke with a boat who would take us the 45 mins downstream to Don Det, the journey down was awesome weaving in out of all these little islands, plus the weather was hot as. Once we arrived on Don Det we headed straight for Mamas Rasta Cafe as Neil had stayed their 3 years ago and said the family were cool.
Walked onto the balcony of Mama's and thought sweet choice, the balcony hanged over the Me Kong and had 8 hammocks lined up, which I would become very familiar with. The family was really friendly tooso settle right down in no time. Neil and Graeme took the last two rooms so at first I went next door to try and get a room their, but the lady I was specking to just kept pointing and laughing at me, after 5 mins of this I lost my rag and told her where to go. So I spoke to Di the oldest of Mamas kids and she said it was alright to just sleep in the hammock for free, which suited me down to a t. For the rest of that day we just aclimatised to Det life, that is to chill right out and do sod all, this place is even more laidback then the rest of Laos, which is just ridiculous. Sat in the hammock and just jumped off the balcony into the mighty Me Kong all day long, loving life.
Saturday 9th july
Woke up ridiculously early as I was in the hammock on the balcony, but thats how it is on Don Det up with the sun and to bed when it goes. Don Det is still waiting to get electicity over here, so all generators, which they turn off around 11pm. Jumped in the Me Kong to wake me up, the family live and die in that river I see them washing my clothes in it, drinking it and washing in it. For the rest of te day we just chilled on the balcony with the odd dip into the Me Kong to cool off. We all had to have nicknames so the family could remember us more easily, Neil was Airport from the last time he had stayed their, Graeme became Bobo, Alister Albert and I became Stiffler as they think I look like the old boy.
That night played shit Me Kong Style, Shithead had to drink Lao Lao and then take a dip in the pitch black Me Kong, I took a hit 3 times. Also that night met Papa for the first time we were still yet to meet Mama too. Papa's a legend round these parts and has had about 9 kids busy boy I tell you you have got Di and Jai who do most of the cooking a younnger girl who seems to constantly be working, then you have the boys Suk, Pong and offchops (thats the name we give him as the boy is nuts) and theres more knocking about back at the family house. Papa was sorting us out all night, then we bought up the idea with him of buying a pig so we could have a monster feast on it. He said he would get back to us tomoz morning.
Eventually made my way to my hammock, which was two metres away from where I had been all day, loving doing absolutely nothig all day, plus its free, as yet avoided severe bites from Mozis, been caking myself in Deet before I hit the sack.
Sunday 10th July
After 3 days of bitching from the crazy kid Offchops Neil finaly got permission from Papa to shave all his hair off. At first Neil just shaved the middle off and left it for about twenty minutes, so funny seeing him rolling about with this stupid cut, caused great amusement for the family too.
Back to the pig, we went with Papa to the village where he lives to check out some pigs that we could buy for our spit roast, believe it or not it would cost us only $30 to 40 to get a pretty big pig. While we waited for somebloe to get backfrom the market the kids took us to see there rice, on the way crazy offchops decided he would run past Katrin and grab her breast, then ran past me and grabbed my balls, the kid is definatly not all their. We came to a decision with Papa to buy a slightly smaller pig for $30 bucks but tomoz. Got back to the balcony and done what we normally do, sit about in hammocks all day, me and Bobo felt a bit active so went for swim to get to this tree stump out in the middle of the Me Kong channel. The problem mind you was that it was against the current, shich made it hard work, Bobo made it half way and i got 3/4's of the way but the Me kong got the better of us. So we just walked up stream and jumped in, a damn site easier,adn more in tow with the Det lifestyle.
Met Mama tonight for the first time, the lady is crazy, shes always dancing about and has this evil laugh, she speaks broken english and then just babbles a load of Laos at you, shes a legend. Everytime I walk past her she throws me a load of sticky rice and chili sauce, or makes me sit down and eat with her, shes quality.
Monday 11th July
Today we got the dollar together and passed it over to Papa, so he could go get our pig. Bobo and Airport went off with Papa to check the goods, they bought it back, still alive at first, but tyed to this long piece of bamboo by its trotters. It was making this evil squilling noise that you could hear as the boat approached, by the time it was underneath the balcony the girls had disappeared. We all accepted the goods and off Papa, Airport and Bobo went to kill and to cook the little beaut. That lunch time Mama had me sit down and eat with them, had the usual sticky rice with some bamboo soup, I was loving it, properly living Laos style with the locals.
About 4 hours after we saw the pig alive, Papa and the lads returned with the whole pig that had been skinned, cut down the middle from mouth to bum, flatened out and then roasted. It was awesome, they dumped it on the balcony, Mama came in with a cleever and we started diggin in to the crackling, which is the best i have ever had, what with Mama's special chili sauce, well worth the 30 bucks already. Mama took the pig away and said she would prepare a big meal for us and the family tonight.
It came round to dinner time and we all sat down on the floor and Mama and Di bought out bits of the pig chopped up, tonnes of sticky rice, baskets full of raw veg & herbs and some lethal chilli dip. It was awesome to sit down with the family and share our pig out, to be honest the pig was a bit fatty but the bits of meat you did come across were lush, maybe not fully cooked in places but I survived. I managed to get loads of the chilli sauce on my hand and for about 3 hours after dinner my hand felt like I had 1st degree burns all over it, I told you it was lethal stuff.
Tuesday 12th July
Mama hit me with some ribs for breakfast, then I done some crazy Kung Fu exercises with Bobo, as im losing my fine physique. I m doing nothing all day and eating tonnes of lush food, but who cares im on holiday and I can work it off when i get back in no time. The kiwi's itched up today that I Phabang and VV, Dom TwoMickeys and Craig who became Ray.
That day I watched the locals slaughter a pig for a Laos wedding the next day. It was mental to sit and watch this pig get tired down then see them thrust this machete into its neck, they collected the blood as thats a delicacy round these parts. Then they threw loads of hot water over the skin and proceeded to scrap it all off it was crazy. After that they cut him from head to bum and pulled the guts out, I had a shot of Lao Lao with the locals but bailed before they started adding in the pigs blood and bits of heart.
The kiwi's had a tazer on them so we started playing shithead with the loser taking a hit from hit, I lost first so had to be the guinea pig. This thing made some evil noise and took a few attempts to take the hit, but its bark was definately worst then its bite.