Goodbye Laos – A last road trip (Tha Khaek Loop)

actually its more like 2 roadtrips…but who cares right?
I could tell you i climbed the mount everest post a few pictures of snow and fog and you would believe me.
You know in fact i am sitting in front of a giant green screen in New York, Germany and didn’t move for 8++ month…

I have no idea how this came out of me right now

Hitchhiking from Luang Prabang to Tha Khaek:
We won by one day…and actually hitchhiking
But that doesn’t matter at all, because hitchhiking competitions are like rolling a dice and getting certain number combinations first…what thats a game? Never mind then.
We were extremely lucky…like rolling a Yatzee 5x in a row.
The longest we waited was 10min and nobody ever asked us to pay anything, the opposite we were invited for food twice and i was forced to drink once…well i sacrificed myself for the competition…but to explain to a chinese couple that doesn’t speak 10 words of english, that you don’t eat meat and don’t drink alcohol, when they invite you for food, is both difficult and disrespectful in my set of reality.

Anyhow we got to our goal in 3 Hitchiking and 4 real days.
By the way – if you need an international drivers license GET IT AT HOME!!! At least if you are German…

In ThaKhaek we had to walk about 2km into the city, and then slept in some roadside motel because it was getting stormy…like real stormy (see the pictures)

Hitchhiking works really good though…maybe i will enhance the hitchwiki regarding this topic

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The Day after arriving in our destination, we found Gemma the Italian girl and decided to do the THA KHAEK – Motorcycle Loop.
We rented 2 bikes, the chinese ones are totally enough, even though the modern ones look cooler.
And drove about 500 Km in 3.5 days….a lot of fun! and dirt! and a burned spot on my leg (i totally forgot, that the exhaust is flamin hot after driving and leaned against my bike…stupid Ole!) and Sticky Rice

There is so much i could talk about now
Lets stick with a short version 😉
We went around the loop clock-wise
1) Blue Lagoon – very nice, but the road is quite hard
green/blue milky water that comes fresh from an underwater spring
(5000 LKip)
2) Konglor Cave – Huge…no seriously…this cave is 7.something km long and, i think i start repeating myself, huge. Bring a good flashligh!
(100,000 Lkip/boat for 3 + 5000LKip/person)
3)Sleeping on the other side of the cave in Ban Nathane
Very beautiful home stay, they fixed my machete, we played a lot of cards with the kids, maybe you can teach them a new game when you go there.
But when we got back to the boatplace we had, after about 2h of fighting, to pay again.
We put up a sign that says it now, please look if it is still there (which i strongly doubt)
4)MangKone Cave, free entry (for us)
looks like a sight seeing spot from communist times, beautiful though
bring powerful flashlights and don’t be afraid of mud if you go in the main cave…the side cave has some old buddha statues, it is like in a dream
5) The Terrible road, we were lucky, it was only dirty, and that because i took every pothole i could possibly find to make our bike (and my shoes for that matter) look like a little adventure. Not to bad…
If you reach the Dead Lake, you know it’s almost over…and you reached a very nice picture spot….or if you come counterclock-wise you know its going to become worse
Sleep at Sawatdee guesthouse…ignore what possible commissioners told you 🙂
6)Tha Falang
a place to take a bath yes, but not as nice as you would wish
there are pointy rocks in the middle, on which you can stand (if you find them in the milky water)
7) a small cave on the way about 10km away from ThaKhaek
Xang cave possibly
10000/per person for a guide who is going to show you a very beautiful biiig cave that you won’t expect…a nice place to swim (more beautiful than Tha Falang)

Thats it, if you do the loop, you will probably start at 7 and go to 1, but the other way is nice too.

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Some words concerning freedom:
My mother asked my to realize that i am free.
I tried, but i in fact realized something else.
I am free, you would say. I am touring around where ever i want, going to places that are beautiful. Doing things i like.
But i don’t feel much more free than you…or less.
Everybody is free, it is the limits we set ourselves.
I have an appointment on the 14th of june, which stresses me out a little bit. I have Visas and other deadlines that push me
I have a goal: to travel around the world.
With this this goal there are responsibilities and limitations that arise completely by its self.
You have Goals too:
Finish you bachelor, make a game, build a house, find a partner, finish your education or what ever it is that you want to achieve.
With this goal you yourself put those limitations on yourself.
You are as free as you want to be!
So long Ole

p.s. Laos is a beautiful quiet slowmotion country.
Chinese money is eventually going to “ruin” it from my point of view.
Food: Noodlesoup (Föh)
Sticky rice (Kao niau)
words:hello- Sabaidee
thank you -khop jai
no- bo
go-pai
how much-taorai
no meat – bo sai seen
no have money – bo mee ngoen

Dharamsala, home of the Dalai Lama

and about 10.000 exile Tibetans.

I have lost track of time.
How long have i been here in this wonderful Tibetan colony.
I taught German and English to some really motivated Tibetans.
They have organised a whole volunteer system to teach interested people, not only from Tibet, but also from Bhutan, Vietnam, Nepal etc. for free.
When you talk to the Tibetans on thing i really dominating the topic, Chinese Occupation and the suppression of Tibetans. You get to know how they crossed the Himalayans, how the Chinese raid the natural ressources of Tibet (which are really rich by the way) and destroy most of the wild life.
The Tibetan flag is omnipresent and you can see “Free Tibet”-signs and stickers in all variations.
All is overshadowed by huge posters of the People who burned themselves for peaceful protest. So far it have been 59 people immolating themselves, and the number is growing.
The tibetans don’t even want a free Tibet anymore, because they know China will never give it up, but the want an end to the suppression, and the killing and torturing of innocent people.
To give an example, in Tibet you are not allowed to have a Picture of the Dalai Lama in your Home, otherwise you will go to prison. And i think everybody agrees, that the Dalai Lama is nobody to be scared of.

These people are refugees, political refugees, who don’t have freedom in their home country, and because everybody is eager to make business with china, nobody dares to touch this sensible topic on a political level.

BUT
Even though the situation seems hopeless, the people are happy. They enjoy their lives and smile.
Because:
“If you have a problem and there is a solution to it, you don’t need to worry.
And if you have a problem and there is no solution, there is simply no point in worrying.”

So please inform yourself about this issue, and also inform others if you already know, because some people don’t even know what Tibet is… :-/

but enough of Tibet.

I had a Reiki session, which was impressive.
I make progress in Meditiation, even though i still don’t have a teacher.
I got sick again, but i got over the worse. Just a little cough and clogged nose left.

My plan is to go back to Bir for a day, and after that take a train to Karnataka.
I heard Hampi and Gokarna are 2 of the most beautiful places in India, the Ole is going to investigate 🙂

Now:
Pictures:

One central temple with prayer mills in Dharamsala

The audience for the play due to the 52nd Aniverary of the Tibetan Childrens Village

The sitting kids symbolize the Tibetan border, the ones inside the different aspects of tibetan culture…it was really a really neat play about Tibetan history….and yes at some point China came, occupied it, cut down the Trees and killed the Animals.

Khampa, a Tibetan guy i know from English conversation class. we hiked to the bakhsu waterfall.

Just the Ole, chillaxing at the river 🙂

On our way back, this guy wanted to sell drugs to me. When i realized that i was seeing a real Arian i had to refuse the drugs and take a pic instead. (Look at those eyes!!!)

Speaking of Arians, Indians have no problem with svastikas whatsoever…

Second trip to the waterfall with Patch, a crazy yet cool Irish guy, i somehow forgot to take a pic…it will follow
We got onto the river pretty far down and rock climbed our way up as far as possible. when we saw this nice place with the amazing stone faces we stopped. (it might be that we stopped because Patch had a little accident…but the place was amazing!!)

so after a while of reading, relaxing and accupressure, i decided to take a shower 😉

After taking a shower, you need to enjoy the other attractions, too!
So JUMP!! *brrr

First shocked

Then happy!!

This guy is Rajan, my german student..or a chance to earn some pocket money…

I hope you all are well, i am feeling better and think i’ll be completely healthy in a few days 🙂

So long Ole

p.s.: I am really interested in who reads this Blog, can anybody who reads this write a little comment? either here or on facebook?….i am a little curious 😀