It was early in the morning when we got to the pier to buy the tickets to go to Muang Ngoy. We’ve heard that the price was different depending on the number of passengers that were going to travel. And so it was. We were only 5 people starting the trip and we paid 150 000 KIP per person.
Ahead of us there was a 5 hour trip in a narrow and long wooden boat.
The trip started with little people and merchandise, but as the boat sailed down the river and stopped in many spots in the margins of the Nam Ou river, it got loaded with many kinds of boxes and bags.
At one stop, one lady had a bucket full of Rhinoceros beetles on the top of a pile of sawdust that was going to join us on the trip to be sold a couple of villages ahead. They were next to me the whole time and I ended up falling asleep right next to it. I was just hoping for the bucket not to fall and leave all the beetles on my face…
Ahead we stopped next to a boat in the margin. The fisherman had caught a big fish and kept it inside the water to keep it fresh. He weighed it in front of us and sold it to the couple in charge of the boat.
On the way we got also some chickens and a bucket of living crabs.
The heat from the sun was intensifying and the boat was getting more crowded. People were falling asleep in the most unorthodox positions. We shared some cookies with the locals and the trip went on.
The brown watered river went through landscapes that kept changing as the boat sailed it. From hills with short vegetation to strong and bushy forests reminding of the Amazon.
It was a short, but intense trip that we won’t forget that soon.