Saturday, 21 December 2013

Kiewkacham to Kasi

Fri 20/12/13, 100km

Had a warm enough nights sleep but by golly it was a cold start! With the toilets being Asian style and at the end of the corridor in a courtyard it took a lot to get me out of bed... Breakfast was an omelette and a stale toasted baguette with coffee and green tea. Good enough!

Looking over the balcony the clouds hung like water in the valleys below and every breathe produced it's own little cloud as well, even in the wind.

The road for the next 55km, to Phou Khoum, had it's share of ups and downs, and skirting along ridge tops. All very very beautiful. Couple of observations about the cycling over the past couple of days. Firstly, wherever the road has a level section there seems to be a Hmong village strung out along it, one house wide. Secondly, there seems to be  disproportionate number of young children... had the Specials Too Much Too Young going through my head a lot. This could be because the adults were out or (my opinion) the lag you tend to get between increased life expectancy and reduction in family size.

It took longer than I'd hoped to reach Phou Khoum and I ended up having lunch there in a greasy chopstick type transport cafe (adjust for cultural differences: a greasy spoon is a type of British cafe, very much concentrating on cheap and cheerful food) where I slurped down veg noodles whilst talking to an English lass on bus on their lunch break. If you're cycling this way you're probably better off stopping at the restaurant with a view just before town.

After lunch it was a long and beautiful descent down towards Kasi. And it really was beautiful. And long. Finally rolled into Kasi where I got a very nice room at the Somchit Guesthouse for 60000 kip. If you stop there though, get a room at the back. The curtains aren't so good and the light at the front is annoying. Oh, and was less than impressed with the food on offer so ended up strolling into Kasi itself and getting a most wonderful noodle soup.

View soon after dawn


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