I officially woke up at 6:30, but I had been partially awake for a few hours because a dog was barking (to himself) for hours, and once the dog tired himself out the roosters started going off around 4 am.
Kevin was still sleeping so I got an iced coffee and then just walked around the town. People seemed to be very confused about why there was a foreign girl roaming around.
When I got back, Kevin was up so we left to get breakfast.
We went back to the place where I had coffee because I saw that they had some decent breakfast options. I got muesli and fruit; he got fruit and yogurt.
After breakfast we went back to the guest house, checked out, and got going on our motorbikes.
The first stop was about 4 miles away— Captain Hook’s.
It’s an organic farm/village where this guy named Captain Hook takes you around and tells you about his village. They practice and believe in black & white magic and have very antiquated ways of living. He told us they believe the earth is flat, that all tourists come from America, and that none of us work; the husbands can have multiple wives; they smoke tobacco from water bongs because they believe that the fire kills bad spirits.
Also, when a woman gives birth, she does so in a special cemetery because if the baby or mother dies, it’s bad luck for the village. Then, the woman has to walk across a fire to return to the village.
Then, on the full moon she goes to the village guru so she can be given a name for the baby. She tells the guru her dream, and if it’s a “good” dream (not sure what that means), he will assign a name. If it’s a bad dream, she has to wait until the next full moon.
He also showed us a BUNCH of different plants— coffee, banana, basil, and special remedial herbs for sunburns, pain, acne, etc. The tour took around 2 hours, which was way longer than we expected.
We left around 12:30 to find some lunch. I didn’t leave without a bit of embarrassment, though; when I was backing out of my parking space, it was on a downhill and gravity took over and the bike fell on its side. Luckily, a nice villager came and helped me pick the bike back up and positioned me in a way where I could exit easily.
We ended up at a random place called Anna’s. I got fried rice again, but it turned out to be more like stir fried veggies with steamed rice. I loved it though– lately I’ve been loving simple meals like this.
I also got sugarcane juice, which came in a plastic bag. I don’t understand why Southeast Asians always drink from plastic bags.
Back on our bikes, bellies full, we drove about an hour to our first waterfall— Tad Fane. The roads were SO BAD. Somehow worse than yesterday, even though it was the same road under construction. There were moments where I couldn’t see a few feet ahead of me. Every time a truck would drive by, it’d kick up a massive sandstorm. I also almost lost control a couple times because the gravel was so loose that my tires slid around a lot. I was holding on for dear life.
We finally got to the waterfall, relieved to have made it in piece.
There were two streams of water. One was HUGE and was incredibly loud, like a train going across tracks. The other one was really small, probably because it’s dry season. It was impressive, but we were standing really far away so that took away from the experience a bit.
We debated whether to go to the next waterfall, Tad Yuang, because we knew it’d be another $2 entrance fee. In the end, we decided to go. On the way out, we had to climb up a steep hill with loose gravel.
Kevin was driving right in front of me and stalled as he was getting up the hill. As I slowed down, I lost my balance and fell on the side. I was fine, but I felt stupid for falling for a third time in two days (luckily they were all when I was pretty much stopped).
The $2 were well worth it! This one was much better than the first.
You enter through a really nice, Japanese-esque garden, walk around that for a bit, and then walk down some stairs to the waterfall. You can’t swim in it, but you get really close.
We drove on to the last waterfall, Tad Champi. The road to get there was insane. It wasn’t paved at all, there were a whole bunch of potholes and bumps, and at one point I hit a rock pretty hard. However, we managed to get there without any major incident.
There was absolutely no one there. Just me and Kevin, swimming around in borderline cold (but still refreshing) water for a bit before sundown. It was really lovely.
We dried off and then got on our bikes. We wanted to get back to Pakse before it got dark, and we had a short window of time to do so.
We got back to the bike rental place right at sunset: 6:15.
After returning our bikes, we went back to the same guest house we had stayed in 2 nights prior (Sabaidee 2).
I recognized the girl who we were sharing a room with. I had first seen her in Don Det, then again at dinner at the French restaurant in Tadlo, then today at the Captain Hook tour. How funny! I finally got to properly meet her— she’s French and is currently in grad school getting her MBA.
We chatted for a bit, showered, and then all three of us went to get dinner.
After looking through 3 or 4 restaurant menus, we finally decided on an Indian place called Jasmine.
I got daal and roti. The daal was delicious and SPICY. To the point that my stomach had trouble digesting it afterward, actually.
We got back and basically did our own thing, playing on our phones and such, until I went to bed around 10:30.