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2. Riding The Rails: Crossing the Border

Hours later our train arrived in Khon Kaen where Tim and Ray joined us, although they stayed in a 3rd class carriage as Tim is not particularly keen on aircon…

Around 18.00 we finally arrived at Nong Khai, only half an hour late, not bad!

David chatted with one of the Skylab (*) drivers and 5 minutes later we were on our way to Thai Immigration.

Passport stamped and exit Thailand, hop on the shuttle bus to Lao Immigration, fill out the arrival card (with not much space to write as usual), and took a minivan to Mixay Paradise Hotel, Vientiane.

Ray on the shuttle bus

An elder female tourist made quite a fuzz about not being able to find a 40 baht bus and refused to join our 200 baht-a-head minivan which was fine with us!

An hour later we checked into our hotel, dumped our luggage in the basic rooms, and had our first beer Lao in the lobby.

After the second bottle, a lady from Khiri dropped by to deliver our train tickets and told us to be ready in the lobby tomorrow morning at 05.45 for the transfer to the station…

Once those formalities were handled we hit the town for a bite, a stroll, and a few more drinks.

We didn’t encounter many tourists but there were still plenty of locals strolling around.

Even so, we didn’t paint the town red as we had an early start and hit the sack way before midnight…

The light patterns on the ceiling kept me awake for a minute or so before falling asleep…

(*) A different kind of Northeastern tuk-tuk.

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