Thunderstorms in Thakek, temples in Champasak and burnout in Kratie!

Cambodia, Laos
The Thakek countryside

The Thakek countryside

Another guesthouse, another set of rules on the bedroom door. In this hotel, I’m not allowed to stick naked pictures on the wall. Damn it.

I’m bang-smack in the middle of Laos, in a place called Thakek. Back in 2007, Tom and I did The Loop, a 500km scooter trip on red dusty roads, staying in beautiful bamboo and wooden-housed villages. I’ve come back to see what’s changed.

The countryside around Thakek is still one of the most beautiful places I’ve seen, with its huge jungle-covered limestone rocks. Like years before, I hire a scooter. But this time it’s monsoon season and I’m alone. The rain lashes down on me and thunder crashes so hard around me that it feels like the sky is going to collapse. I drive against the pelting rain, frightened of the mightiness of Mother Nature, but with an enormous smile on my face as I experience the Earth’s powers.

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