I like to ride my bicycle

A group of us had arranged to go tubing this afternoon, but late in the evening Nick (who runs the hostel) told us that the best time to start is morning as you can spend the whole day doing it. Instead, some of the girls went while Jo, Heather and I loafed around watching telly and catching up on emails. I’ll let you guess which one of us was online all day.

Eventually, we got off our collective backsides and hired mountain bikes for a little exploration of the surrounding area. For a whacking $2 apiece, we headed off in a random directions until we saw a small sign saving “cave”. Cool. Off we cycled.

After crossing fields, seeing splendid views, being stared at by buffalo/bison/big cow-ish things with scary horns, trusting our lives to rickety bamboo bridges and waving “sabadii” to small children we finally made it to the “cave”.

Someone had stolen it.

At least that’s how it appeared. There was a sign warning “STOP one people 10,000k”, a little seat where someone collecting money might sit, and a total lack of cave. We did explore a bit, but we just couldn’t find anything cavelike. A well, a shallow grave for a midget (empty) and some empty beer bottles but no cave. Maybe the guy packs it up and takes it home when he goes for the night.

We gave it our best, then mounted up and pushed back towards the main road and a guest house we’d spotted for a drink. While we sat and chewed the fat, the threatening rain clouds stopped threatening and instead opened. Heavily. We waited an hour and the rain only lessened slightly so we gave up and continued our ride in it.

To the edges of the town to a Shell station that wouldn’t have looked out of place in Iraq. Through the old air strip which is now used like a semi-road. Past a temple which looked half-completed and had market stalls and a small child’s train ride inside. And then we dropped the bikes off. We got about three hours for a whole pound and it’s only a shame that the weather stopped us having more fun.

The rain didn’t stop all night. We stayed in and watched bad films, ate full English’s for dinner (Jo’s second in a day – tut tut) and battered balls around on the pool table. Nice and relaxing, pretty much what Vang Vieng is famous for.

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