On our second day in Luang Prabang we woke early to check out the monks. At 6am a sea of orange started heading toward as I frantically searched for some sort of food to offer them. Mum bought a basket of rice from a local lady and we rushed into position to give our offering. As the monks arrived the frenzy ended and a clam washed over me. Perhaps it was the sea of orange or the complete silence of the monks that created a serene feeling. I felt very weird scooping sticky rice out with my hands and putting it in the monks’ bags. Mum kept saying she wished she’d brought something good to give them – like chocolate.
After filling up on some weird food we jumped into a mini bus to journey to Vang Vieng. The scenery on this trip was magnificent. It was like nothing I have ever seen, with mountains that seemed to be cliffs on all sides. The mountain villages in Laos are built right on the road – our guide explained that this was because the area had been flattened for the road and so it was easier to build on. It seemed dangerous when kids and chickens were out playing on the roads, but the tight corners meant that cars couldn’t drive too fast anyway. When we were right in the highest part of the mountains the road was covered in fog and it started to rain. Somehow our driver pushed through and left those sitting in the car to bite their finger nails and hope.
We stopped for lunch atop a mountain and had the chance to breathe in the perfect fresh air. It tasted sweet. We then continued our journey to the beautiful river town of Vang Vieng, where my capacity for beautiful scenery was about to get a work out!