With my Thai Visa running out, it was decided that I needed
to take a trip over to Laos, so I could visit the Thai consulate in Vientiane
and grab another 60 day visa… so off I went.
I left on a Tuesday afternoon, and checked into the hostel
on Tuesday night… but before I did that, I had to cross the Thai-Laos border,
which was kind of strange. First I got a tuk tuk to the bridge, then tried to
walk across the 5km bridge across the maekong, to which I was told off by
border agents… and ended up paying the 20 baht to take the bus across. When I
arrived, I got a Laos visa on arrival, which looks pretty cool in my passport,
and prepared to get up early the next morning to visit the Thai consulate.
The next morning, bright and early, I got up at 7, rented a
bicycle, and rode the 4kms to the consulate, getting well lost along the way. I
got there half an hour before they opened, and there were already at least 10
expats there… So I jumped in line, and got all my stuff ready. I’m not really
the biggest fan of that place, for reasons I’ll explain when I’m out of
Thailand, but I’m just glad to say that it’s over, and can be summarized with
the phrase “hurry up and wait”. After handing over my passport to them for the
night, I went back to the hostel, and made some friends.
I hung out with several people during the day, and I have
never felt the backpacker vibe more strongly. To talking about smoking weed
with the other Canadians, to talking about current world events with the Germans,
the Russians and the Dutch, it was really awesome. A group of Australians,
Brits, Canadians, US Citizens, and a few other nations went to watch the sunset
over Thailand, which was really nice. I then went out to dinner with two guys
from Holland – we got pizza, it was awesome – and then just sort of chilled,
played shit head (awesome card game) and talked for the rest of the night.
I was really sad to see them go, but that’s part of the
backpacker life. One of the things this girl from BC named Amanda said to me,
really stuck with me. I kept seeing “see you later” to people, because I didn’t
know what else to say, but I would clearly not see them later, but she just
said “happy travels” which I hadn’t heard before, and I like, a lot. So that’s
gonna be my new motto for a while.
I checked out a few monuments like the Prince’s palace, but
I’m definitely going to have to go back to Laos one time in my life to see what
else there is to see.