Trip report - Bkk and Laos Pt1.

Aug 31st, 2005, 09:17 PM
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rhk.. LOL..

orgy7 is offline  
Sep 1st, 2005, 08:19 PM
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Luang Prabang -

We arrived before 11.00am and were met at the airport by the people from the 3 Nagas hotel. Its only about 10 minutes by car to the old part of town. We had stayed at this hotel last year for 5 nights and really enjoyed it. So much so that we felt we really wanted to return to LP and have a little longer - 8 nights this time. We also wanted to do this sooner rather than later as we could see the town changing rapidly and the tourist numbers greatly increasing. In the year that has certainly happened – considering August is low season, the town is brimming with visitors. The 3 Nagas and many others are booked out. There is so much building going on. Nearly all the guesthouses are extending if the can. Since last year the 3 Nagas has doubled its rooms (still only 13) but so have many others or they are trying to get them ready for the high season. Because of the heritage listing, buildings must fit in with the theme of the place and there will be no tower blocks thank goodness. I imagine there will be some more bigger hotels being built out of the centre where the restrictions are less and there is some land. Even so they do seem to try and preserve the whole area.

The old town and heritage area is on a peninsula of land that juts between the Mekong and the Kham rivers. Its quite narrow with a road up the side of each river meeting at the tip of the peninsula and two other roads running parallel along the ridge in between – so only 3 blocks wide. One of these is Sakkarine Street (Sisavangvong St at its other end) which is the main tourist road with the night market at the bottom end and most of the restaurants along the length. Appropriately dubbed by Bob as “Falang Way”. The other parallel road is smaller and most noted (by me anyway) as being the road on which “L'Elephant” the restaurant is to be found – more on that later. There are many small roads and little lanes running off Falang way down towards each river. At the bottom of the road is the GPO and the main cross street Setthathilat which is the site of the Dara Market (currently closed). Most of the streets start out as one name and change along the length. If you continued across the junction of Falang Way and Settthathilat although the road name changes you'd come to the Maison Souvannaphoum hotel which many people have been interested in. From the tip of the peninsula to the GPO is about a 25 minutes very brisk walk. It's not a big area and very easy to walk around or hire push bikes for the day at 10,000kip (US$1) However some of the lanes are still very rough and if its raining very boggy indeed. They are busy improving all the lanes and are doing some good brick paving. As most of the small lanes run downhill they act as gutters when it rains.



MaryW is offline  
Sep 1st, 2005, 08:22 PM
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We chose to stay in the 3 Nagas because we had enjoyed it last year, it was still a good price (US$68.40) and in the area we wanted to be – perhaps the best area for seeing the Monks in the mornings, and great for the best restaurants, very near the main wats etc. We chose room 6 in the old building – they have finished restoring another building across the street which is also nice but we really liked room 6 for its very large veranda (upstairs) overlooking the street and the life there. Criticism of the Nagas is usually about dark rooms and noise. Well the rooms particularly upstairs in the old building are a bit dark but have good lighting – this is because they have very very high dark wooden ceilings and very wide verandas with a low overhang to the roof. Thats typical of the old Lao buildings and in fact I rather liked it. We could sit on the veranda and nobody really could notice you up there – watching!!! The rooms in the new building are much brighter as they don't have the overhanging veranda. The ground floor ones have an open terrace. The suite in that building has a nice big veranda and is at the back of the building and so should be quiet as well. Noise – well it is one of the busier streets and in the day there are a lot of small motorbikes etc passing and in the early morning the Monks pass by at 6am – they are quite but small buses do come in from the outskirts bringing tourists. No large vehicles are allowed in the area. About the largest is a 20 ish seater bus. Still none of this bothered us – we were up most mornings for the monks ourselves anyway. The windows have shutters – no curtains so you need to shut them for the light and this also reduces the noise substantially. The town is very early to bed so you don't get all night traffic or anything like that. We live in the country and have no passing traffic and so are not use to any traffic noise but we weren't bothered by it at night. Again I would think the new building would be quieter as all the rooms face onto the large garden at the rear of the building.

Anyway having arrived in LP quite early we couldn't check into the room – they were fully booked and had to shift the current occupants! So we filled out the appropriate forms for them and left the bags and headed down the road for an early lunch. Le Cafe Ban Vat Sene is just down the road a little and one of 4 establishments under the same management. These are L'Elephant Restaurant, Le Cafe, and the pair of restaurants at the 3 Nagas – one French, one Lao. There are lots and lots of other restaurants in town many good but opinions seems to settle on these 4 as at least some of the best. We ate most often in these last year and were more than happy to do so again this year.

Lunch was an excellent fried rice , wonton soup, coconut ice creams and very good espressos. Total bill US$9.25. Most everywhere accepts dollars, kip or baht. Bills frequently come in all 3 but usually if you pay in dollars the change is in kip – but not always. Most places you will get a slightly better deal in Kip – say in the markets as the people tend to call $1 = 10,000kip where the exchange rate is about 10800 kip. The exception is in restaurants where they usually go the other way if anything. Still its only a tiny amount.

After we had finished that lot, we wandered back to the hotel where our room was ready and waiting. Unpacked and settled in with a bit of book time on the veranda. In the evening we had drinks and nibbles on our veranda before we went off for a walk down the street and then back to the Nagas Lao restaurant – this is in the building across the road from the old building and is excellent. We had an LP salad to start. I'd been waiting a year for that – its really good. Green salad (they use a lot of watercress up in LP) with a little HB egg white, onion, other herbs and a little tomato and a nice dressing. What makes it special is a mixture of crushed peanuts and fried garlic and onion. If anyone wants the recipe I have it – I do make it at home but its never been the same as theirs is – can't quite get the herbs. To follow we had a Laab, marinated buffalo, steamed veges and sticky rice. Yum. Total US$17.40.
We didn't bother with wine with dinner tonight although it is a reasonable price – we'd had enough earlier. We had laid in a stock of wine, Lao beer and a duty free bottle of gin as well as some nibbles we get in Bangkok – fried bananas etc – so we were doing well. I refuse to pay the outrageous prices for the mini bars and so go prepared.
MaryW is offline  
Sep 2nd, 2005, 01:34 AM
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Mary - I am enjoying your detailed report on LP. We will be there in February for the first time - sounds like it is changing rapidly due to the influx of tourists.
Craig is offline  
Sep 2nd, 2005, 07:37 AM
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I love reading about LP. I loved our week long stay there and want to go back again!
Kathie is offline  
Sep 2nd, 2005, 08:07 AM
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and I really want to go for an extended time. I was there for two days in 1991 but that's all.
glorialf is offline  
Sep 2nd, 2005, 05:32 PM
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Next day we were up before 6.00am and popped the camera's outside for a bit to warm up after the air conditioning. The monks go out for their alms about 6.00 each day. This end of town has the largest number of Wats and so a lot of monks in total – several hundred. They do go off in order so you will see a group waiting at the entry to their wat until another group passes. The residents of the town come out each morning with food – generally just sticky rice to give to the monks – as each monk files past a small portion of rice is put into their alms bowl by the giver. It is meant to be a quite time of reflection for both the monks and the people. Monks go barefoot and bareheaded and silent (although you do see some chatting especially the novices) as an act of humility. The giver should also be barefoot and bareheaded, with downcast eyes. Both men and women are out. Women usually either kneel or have a low chair for the old ones. Men can stand. Both usually have a scarf tied across the shoulder down to the hip. These are the scarfs that you will see at the weavers. I don't know how significant it is but most alms givers have fairly pale or white scarfs – some the brighter ones. As the rice has to be freshly cooked the givers must get up early to prepare it. Many of the old ladies are there without fail every day – rain or shine. When it rains both monks and givers use umbrellas. This procession is what many tourists (including us) find so fascinating about being in Luang Prabang. Consequently each morning there are a lot of tourists out watching and taking photos. Generally the monks don't mind and the younger ones are very happy to talk about it during the day. What is a problem is that a few people think its a theme park and that its perfectly okay to stick their camera under the noses of these monks, to rush in and out of the lines and generally disturb them. I think it necessary to be as polite and discreet as possible. I noticed this year a sign explaining the whole process on the outer wall of L'Elephant restaurant – put out by the town authorities. It's a pity a copy of this is not put in each hotel room. I'm sure that a lot of people simply don't realize what they are doing is disturbing and offensive to the monks and their religion. Visitors are welcome to gives alms too – in fact there are always a group of Lao women on the streets with baskets hanging from their shoulders. They will accost any likely looking tourist and try to get them to take baskets of the food to give to the monks – they'll get them sitting down and sort of doing it right but at the end of it they want paying – usually $1 per pack of food – its not much and if you want to do it great but they are very very pushy. Most of the tourist look a bit shocked by it all. You can also go down to the market in the morning and buy food or ask the hotel.

One morning there were about 3 buses of asian tourists brought into town to give alms – they had food etc from the tour company and were doing everything right but it kind or threw the whole procession out – an added 60 people all in a very tight line. Sometimes watching the tourists is far more interesting than the monks!!!! The chooks (chickens) did okay that day as there was a lot of rice on the ground as well. Each morning the chooks come out just before the monks – they know a good thing when they see it. Some days you will see someone giving something special – one morning a whole family of 5 or 6 (adults) were out. They all gave rice to each monk, the father gave a special package of food and useful items to the abbot of each wat as he came along at the front of his group and the young man gave each monk some money. Obviously a special occasion for them. They also had someone photographing the event for them.

It can be quite hard to get good photos especially without getting in the way. The light is low and there is a lot of movement. Make sure you warm up your camera if its been in the air con as the lense fogs up. Dan has a wizz bang camera this year with a telephoto lense with was great – he could sit unobtrusively on the other side of the road and get good shots. He also often walked down to the river to meet the groups returning to their wats – just that bit later in the morning and the light was so much better. Being rainy season also meant the light was not as good. For us much of the charm of Luang Prabang is founded on this Alms walk. In a way its the essence of the place.
MaryW is offline  
Sep 2nd, 2005, 05:42 PM
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one one huge regret from our LP stay was that i was too lazy to get out of bed and go and see the monks....that alone is good enough reason to return for a couple of days...

i have made merit at a small wat early one morning on the chao payra a few years ago in a private ceremony and that was very nice...
rhkkmk is offline  
Sep 2nd, 2005, 06:11 PM
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Yes Bob it is a shame - you'll just have to go back. One of the big advantages of being right on the peninsula is that you can fall back into bed after a making merit!!!!
MaryW is offline  
Sep 4th, 2005, 12:46 AM
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After the monks we had a leisurely breakfast on our veranda. There are 4 large comfortable chairs, 2 footstools, a small table and a lowish table for breakfast on our veranda. They bring breakfast up on a tray that slots onto the end of the bigger table and so we have a very comfortable place to eat. You can go down to the cafe but I like being upstairs overlooking things. This is where we ate each morning. After that we took some washing down the road – there are many many signs for places to do washing - 10,000kip per kg plus about half again to have it ironed – they do a good job. Only 8,000 kip at the other end of town! The hotel also does washing at a reasonable rate but not quite that good. We had a very simple day walking around the town reacquainting ourselves with the various wats and shops. Bought a couple of pen and ink drawings from a girl up near wat Xieng Thong (the major wat at the tip of the peninsula) - $3 each and some silver filigree boxes - just little ones from a shop just down from the Nagas costing between $6 and $9. You see these boxes across the region and into Vietnam – made from 85% silver – just make nice little gifts. They pop up in shops all over town. Picked up things like beer and water and stopped for coffee at our favourite cafe Ban Vat Sene. Ran into a couple in the street who we had met in Vientiane – Australians who have lived in the States for about 14 years. They were touring on a 250 cc motorbike. They had had rain all the way up on the road which is spectacular but a bit hairy – they'd come off the bike when another vehicle pushed past – fortunately not hurt and they are experienced riders so had proper helmets and so on. We chanced upon each other a week later when they came back to LP – they were trying to get around the north but the rain had been so heavy there were lots of landslides and the roads were totally impassable. I had originally wanted to go further north but I'm glad I didn't bother – I wanted the time in LP and sometimes it can be really tough getting in and out when the rains starts. Even by plane, they can't always take off from the small airports so you get stuck. Dan went off for a massage – not as good as Vientiane but still nice - Spent some time chatting to some of the monks as they are free in the daytime. Most of them do English lessons as well as other subjects at schools in the day. They love to have help with the English and you'll find yourself trying to explain the meaning of all sorts of words and phrases. They are also very happy to talk about their lives as monks and the lives of the people in general. I learnt such a lot from them and had a great time. We walked down to the market before eating to check out what had changed and to look at the weaving. Dinner we had in the Cafe Ban Vat Sene – brochettes, french fries, salad and wine for $12.40.

Next day we took a tuk tuk out to Ban Phanom – a weaving village about 5 kms from town. (45000kip for the tuk tuk to take us, wait and take us back home) This is the village that you are most likely to be taken to for weaving but there are others. This is the one that Kathie and Bob speak of with the co-operative. These same weavers will go into the market in the evening. We had a wander around – much of the work is very similar so you just have to look out for colours you like and check the finish. We bought a load of tablemats – they are the type that have a panel of weaving set in a back cotton border. Cost only 10,000kip (< $1) each – asking price in the market is higher at about 15,000. One of the strange things I always find in Thailand and Lao is that when you buy something then everyone else offers you the same! We also bought a number of scarves – some cotton, some silk all lovely. Cotton costs $4 but usually drops to $3 and the silk $7 but usually $6 especially when you buy a few. Everyones prices are much the same. Some of these will be gifts, some scarves will be just that and a number are either hanging on our walls or used as table runners. We had quite a bag load and did our best to share the sales around rather than all from one person. I don't know how they will wash – we'll see – I've read that they aren't colourfast but really I think maybe if you hand wash in cold water they would be fine – mostly its natural dyes so I feel it could be a problem. Last years purchases are mostly on the walls so it hasn't been a problem. Back to town for coffee and a rest. We ate at the 3 Nagas french cafe downstairs in the evening. A green salad and Mekong seaweed pasta to start, followed by a lao risotto and a buffalo steak in green peppercorns. $19.00. They are doing quite a few fusion dishes. The Risotto was made with sticky rice – okay but not a brilliant version.


MaryW is offline  
Sep 4th, 2005, 12:48 AM
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Next day it was really raining in earnest – it had been a fair bit previously too. So we had a lazy day – out for the monks in the morning and a walk and then coffee as usual with a bit of book time and a nap in the afternoon. Dinner back at Cafe Bat Van Sene – brochettes and salad again with pizza for Dan and red wine. $14.00

Last year we had taken a trip up river to the caves – I liked the bottom cave but the top one had very little left in it. The boat trip was great though. On the way you can choose to stop at the whiskey village for extremely fresh brewed lao lao. and also at a paper/ silk village. We liked the silk village and wanted to go back – we took another tuk tuk (40,000kip) to Ban Xang Khong – a bit further up river from the other weaving village. I actually prefer this village as there are a number of shops complete with the weavers working away. I think there is a much greater variety and definitely more silk used. Its a bit harder to get around to see each one though. We wanted to get to one we had visited last year. It took a bit of work but we found it – near to the steps down to the boat landing – there are 2 lots of steps close together but you have to work your way around. Near the main steps there is also one shop that produces Mutmee or tie dyed silk – only place I seen up there doing that – a bit more expensive that the rest but nice – if you are staying at the Nagas and like there cushion covers thats they type of thing. Shop is called Mut mee Textile shop and if you ask the tuk tuk to take you to the boat landing you will find it. We wandered off to the other boat landing to buy the more traditional style as a present for a friend. Ended up with a silk hanging – narrowish and meant to be a scarf but bigger for 130,000kip (<$13) plus another cotton/silk one at 100,000kip and a couple of big shawls in silk and cotton for 200,000 kip each (<$20) from another weaver just up the road. They may end up as shawls or hangings. We have a house full! I should say it was still raining hard and we were pretty muddy by the time we'd finished. Back to town and clean up. Walked down town to the GPO area for coffee and cocoa at Joma's Bakery – same people as in Vientiane. They are quite good. Upstairs is a branch of Mulberries - its a not for profit group selling silk, cotton, tea etc. They have some different stuff – nice silks, cushion covers etc that you don't see elsewhere. We then went on to look at the Maison Souvannaphoum hotel. We asked to see rooms and they were very helpful. The grounds are nice with a nice pool. The main old building is in the middle of the grounds and has the pool, restaurant and 3 suites in it. The queens suite (the second best – the King gets the best) is a very nice big room with large dressing area and big bathroom. It doesn't have a balcony or veranda. The standard rooms are in a 2 storey block to the side of the property. They are very nice, bright and airy but not very big. They have a big bed and a big day bed in them so there is not a lot of floor space. There is tea/coffee gear ( not available at the 3Nagas) – the bathroom is small but nice shower only and they all have a veranda with a couple cane chairs and a table. It reminds me of the old part of the Sofitel at Hua Hin if you know that. I liked it and the grounds were nice but I'm still glad to be at the Nagas. The website prices seemed way too high to me but then all the prices are skyrocketing. They wouldn't let us take photos. When we got back to the Nagas a couple who had been staying were moving out – mainly because they had to change rooms twice to stay the 2 extra days – thats because you can book specific rooms at the Nagas and it does complicate things. I suggested they try the Maison and we spoke to them a couple of days later – they had got a good price and thought it lovely – had better service than the Nagas. The rest of our day was spent with massages etc and I bought a rice steamer basket for a friend (10,000kip) – I had bought a number of indiviual ones last year for us and really like them – they work really well. Dinner back at the Nagas Lao – marinated chicken, beef with onions and chilli, saute vegs with lots of wild mushrooms. and sticky rice. $12.80.

MaryW is offline  
Sep 4th, 2005, 12:49 AM
  #32  
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The following three days we went out to see the monks in the mornings, visited all the wats again, chatted to monks a lot, had coffee and good food did a bit more shopping and generally just hung out. We did intent to go out to the waterfall but it seemed to have come into town for us. It really was pretty wet so we just didn't bother – next time. Dan climbed up the steps to Mt Phousi in the middle of town. He did it twice as in the early morning it was above the cloud and nothing much to see. Tuesday night we finally got around to dinner at L'Elephant – this is the original one a block back behind the Villa Santi towards the Mekong. ie behind the 3 nagas and down a bit. - easy to find. However don't mix it up with the 3 Elephants a new restaurant opposite Villa Santi. The 3 E's gets plenty of custom including big groups – I expect it is okay but each day as we passed by there was a group of girls preparing their veges in the lane just beside the side door – washing them in plastic tubs on the ground. Worst thing was that the lane was steep and about 2 or 3 feet above them was piled all the bags of rotting garbage waiting to be collected (which wasn't every day!) With the rain, all this was washing down the lane. Not too special.

The real “L'Elephant” has a very good and deserved reputation. Its still just as good as last year. We ate very good green salads, buffalo steaks that were very tender, excellent coconut crème brulee with roasted bananas and drank house red and espresso. Total bill $36. They offer a lot of wild game meats. For me its a toss up whether to eat at L'Elephant or the 3 Nagas Lao – they are both excellent – We ate most at the Lao cause we were not going to get that anywhere else. The Cafe and the french Nagas also share a number of the same dishes and much of the stuff like the pastry is prepared at l'Elephant.

A word on shopping – there is some lovely wood in Caruso Lao just down from the Nagas , Silversmiths work (mostly making bowls) in the area below the GPO and across from the Maison Souvannaphoum, hand made paper is mostly in the area towards the tip of the peninsula. Everything is in the night market, and there is a tribal market of applique cotton at the bottom of town which also operates in the day. They do some nice bed covers, cushions etc. Just be aware that its not all cotton and doesn't like a hot iron as I've found out to my cost! One place I must mention is Satri Lao (owned by the same people as Satri House) they have I think 3 shops or maybe more that I haven't found. They all have very similar stock “Antiques”, silk blouses and jackets etc. The little silver boxes I bought for about $6 to $10 they are asking about $29 and up. They are exactly the same! The silk jackets and blouse are nice but about double the price of the same in the Morning Market in Vientiane - like $200 US for a jacket so not cheap . I did see some things that weren't elsewhere but I believe thats more because I just hadn't really looked too hard. They have nice stuff but very overpriced. Of course out in the villages is lots of weaving and hand made paper.

There are many more things you could do but we really enjoyed just absorbing the town – its a lovely place and although getting busier still very worth while. I'm sure most people wouldn't want as long as we had but if you can take a bit extra time. Most only stay 2 nights – 3 or 4 would be better I think – time to take on the real feeling of the place.
MaryW is offline  
Sep 4th, 2005, 02:50 AM
  #33  
 
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Mary thank you for sharing your trip with us. I have found it very interesting and taken loads of notes - especially the LP ones, we are spending 4 nights in LP in October. We are staying out of town but we do intend on getting up early to see the monks.

Also want to go to the caves, love trips on the water.

Thanks once again.
patsey73 is offline  
Sep 4th, 2005, 03:07 AM
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Mary, I'm really enjoying reading all the details in your great report. It makes me miss Laos. I also think talking to the monks is one of the best things to do in LP. Like you, I loved the Cafe Ban Vat Sene and the 3 Nagas Lao restaurant. Those were my two favorites in LP.
Mealea is offline  
Sep 4th, 2005, 06:03 PM
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We left Luang Prabang with regret and flew back to Vientiane for a night – picked up the bits and pieces from the market that we hadn't got on the first stop and then headed for the border the next day. Our friend met us at the border and took us back to Udon Thani. We had a leisurely lunch at a recently opened bar called the Irish Clock in Udon. This is an amazing place for Udon - for its roominess, very clean kitchen and great toilets. Food and Irish beer good too! Upstairs they have 8 rooms that would rival any 41/2 star hotel in Bangkok. Really very nice and cost only 850bt so if you have occasion to stay in Udon, I would check it out. We then headed out to the airport for a very delayed flight back to Bangkok.

This end of our trip we regard as our indulgence. We have stayed at the Peninsula Hotel for the last 6 trips – we love it. However each year it gets more expensive – they can do that as it always has a high occupancy and it did start out at bargain rates. Somehow each year we justify it. We book through a company that gives us a good rate and if we stay a length of time (usually longer than 5 nights but sometimes 4) we get an upgrade to a 1 bedroom suite which is truly wonderful. I always make sure to justify the longer stay! We have become good friends with the Manager of the River Cafe (the basic restaurant) over the years. We also know the Executive Pastry Chef. That all came about because I have a problem with eating gluten and so they started out simply making sure that I'd stay well. Anyway we get thoroughly spoilt. When we arrive at the restaurant the manager and half the staff come out to greet us and the manager always looks after us himself. All sorts of extras appear at our table. It's quite funny to see other diners trying to figure out if we are “anybody” they should know when we are just a couple of very ordinary hicks from the bush. The hotel is a great experience regardless but our friends certainly make it very special indeed. We keep in touch with them throughout the year and also go visit them when we are staying in any other hotel. All the staff in the hotel are very good indeed – even when we first arrive at the main door the bellboys always remember us – amazing really as we are only there once a year. Maybe we look weird. All staff greet you and after the first day there most of them greet you by name which I also find extraordinary. This year the hotel threw in a bonus of afternoon tea (sometimes its buffet dinner). On the weekend they do a buffet afternoon tea. Its very nice but not so good for me as I can't eat a lot of the pastries etc. I just had to punish myself with the great chocolates, crème brulee and mousses – that was really hard!

So we had five good nights in the Peninsula and did a bit more shopping and generally relaxed. Main shopping expedition was down to Prahurat and Sampeng Lane in Chinatown for fabric. I like to sew and always stock up on the great fabric you can get here. Thai cottons (that are used for the Thai skirts) come in lengths of 2 or 4 yards and cost only 150 or 300 bt – they are good quality medium weight cottons and make great blouses and skirts. Also this year some lovely chinese silk and a wad of other stuff – thank god for the baggage allowance. Sampeng Lane has had a face lift since last year with new paving and new covered roof – it works very well. Its still very crowded and a bit of a trial but get there early and its not too bad.

So ended nearly 4 weeks of holiday. Each year we think that maybe we won't get back next year but as soon as we get home we start plotting again. We still didn't make it to the waterfall in Luang Prabang and still after all these years haven't got to Prasart Museum - so we really just have to go back.

So thats the end of the saga. Hope some of you have got something from it all or at least have enjoyed reading. If anyone does want to know anything else, just let me know.
MaryW is offline  
Sep 4th, 2005, 06:24 PM
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Thanks again - great report!
Kathie is offline  
Sep 5th, 2005, 07:48 PM
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mary---great report...much enjoyed...now get throwing that pottery so you can have 8 nites at the penn next year...hahaha...
seems like your purchases at the silk "co-op" were cheaper than ours..karen paid about $12.50 to $16.00 for her silk shoulder scarfs...shawls...

caruso lao is fantastic...did you buy anything?? among other things we had a table shipped here and it arrived in 2.5 months...expensive but fabulous things...they have a shop in vientenne as well...
rhkkmk is offline  
Sep 5th, 2005, 08:16 PM
  #38  
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Hi Bob,

Yes I think we did do well at the co-op - not another soul around. The other village was a bit dearer. Karens purchases may also have been a larger size. I love the work at Caruso Lao - didn't get anything in the end - hummed and hawed over a few pieces but had to stop somewhere. Also I have a brother who is a woodworker as well as having lots of them close by here as its timber country - not that that would stop me normally! Glad your table arrived safely.

Now I really do have to get throwing! Although I've made sure that Dan has plenty of work coming up - can't disappoint the Pen can I?
MaryW is offline  
Sep 6th, 2005, 10:06 AM
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we all have to work hard to keep all of our favorites in bkk and thailand and SEA in general, busy and open for business so that we can return and return...

thanks for such a nice report...
rhkkmk is offline  
Sep 6th, 2005, 10:08 AM
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mary--if you go off season again give the pansea a try for a couple of days...while its not the penn, it is very nice for LP....

am i correct that the owners of the nagas also own all the other premier places downtown?? nagas, l'elepahnt, a couple of other restaurants, etc...

by the way we made the terrible mistake of eating at 3 elephants...they were out of everything and it was only so so...service was not very good either
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