Road in laos
The road in Laos 1E - a primer of red color with ravines and mounds - goes through numerous villages in the direction of the town of Sepong, periodically resting on narrow wooden bridges. It is crammed with a multitude of peasants in motor-blocks with carts I notice that the rear brake gradually disappears, and in the nearest village we turn to the workshop. The owner immediately realized what we want. A moped was scattered nearby. Andrew, looking around, accidentally stepped on a plastic sidewall. There was a savory crunch. The owner of the moped, almost sobbing, grabbed her in his arms. After a moment, sympathizers gathered next to the victim, talking about something and looking unkindly at us. We offer compensation of 50 thousand kip (200 rubles.), And everyone is happy.
The red soil is replaced by pale clay, and the road turns into a deserted path leading into the jungle. It is much more difficult to go - in the forest the clay is wet after rain with a track which has been pressed through by motoblocks, in some places a thick layer of sand. I had to lie. We drive into a deaf village and immediately find ourselves in the center of attention of the Aborigines. This is the edge of the people of Lao Tong.They are considered the oldest people, and on holidays other Lao people give them a symbolic tribute for the right to live on their territory.
In the evening we arrive in Muang Ping. Here, the majority are already ethnic Vietnamese, their mood is less friendly. We have not written on the forehead (in Vietnamese) that we are Russian. And Russian endurists in these parts see not often ...
In the morning we try to eat for the future: the day is not easy. Today our course is to the southeast, to Saravan. Along the road number 23 of huge dimensions bomb craters, flooded with water and similar to artificial reservoirs. Americans dropped bombs with poisons, so little is growing around, and in the jungle huge bald spots. Instead of fertile soil sand, which sudden gusts of wind spread for many kilometers around.
The red soil of the mountain “highway” unexpectedly ends with a bridge blown up during the war. A ferry goes across the river - two boats connected by a platform. We load it with a group of local. Andrew takes pictures, he is posed by a cheerful grandfather. A rarity for these places, because the population of the outback still believes that the photo takes away part of the soul from them, and turns away from the lens.
Then the road goes into the jungle.Again we go to places scorched by poisonous bombs. Under the wheels of stones and sand. There are lumberjacks on motoblocks, they are felting trees and spreading logs on the boards with chainsaws.
Above the head grows a ceiling of young bamboo, which unpleasantly gushes on the heads. Due to the dense vegetation and sand it is becoming more and more difficult to go. We pass numerous homemade bridges through mountain rivers. In one place scared butterflies living on a tree. As if in a fairy tale, we stood and watched thousands of butterflies fly around.
In the end, we rest on a mountain range, which is impossible to pass through, and we understand that we have lost our way. But worse is that the water is over! Feel cramps in the legs - the first bells of dehydration.
Max has a severe leg contusion. It took more than three hours to find the road. We return to the village, which is almost 30 km, and immediately look for a drink. We find only a sweet swiss called Sponsor, water is not sold. We drink a couple of cans and take the bank with us. Time to evening, and in the mountain jungle darkens instantly. Together with the sun goes away and warm.
We connect the communicator Andrew to my motorcycle, and I put it in a bag on the tank.
Road 23 is shown in a fat strip, and in fact it is a narrow mountain trail, strongly blurred by small rivers. Sometimes it even goes along their channels. It got dark. Rolling fatigue. In the light of my little headlight, almost nothing is visible, and Max's light disappeared altogether. On one of the climbs on liquid clay, he drops a motorcycle. I stop and help him to complete the climb.
The guys are leaving ahead. On the next ascent, flying out of the rut, I'm already falling. The bag with the communicator flies from the tank, tearing out the ignition wire. On the radio alert about the incident guys and in complete darkness trying to restore the wiring. Andrew returned, but dropped the motorcycle on the rocks, pushing the cover of the crankcase. Oil drives only under pressure, but you can not go like that. Yes, and I sowed oil in the confusion to top up. Crawl to Max and decide to spend the night right on the road. Apparently, someone at the top does not want us to go further today.
While Max was working on a fire, I found soap in my things. Andrew sealed them a crack in the lid.
At first I did not believe it, but not a drop of oil flowed out anymore. We put on all the clothes. The fire is warm, but generally it’s cool in the cold. The guys ate a can of canned tuna.I refused - really wanted to drink. They drank a can of Sponsor for three. It would be better not to drink ... Gathering to the touch lying bamboo sticks, we hope that the next stick does not move in his hands. I lean back on my backpack and fall asleep half-sitting. What a bliss to be in a horizontal position! And the stars are so beautiful ...
"There's someone walking around ..." - through the dozing voice of Max's voice. I immediately remembered where I was, and the dream disappeared like a hand. Something big was broken through thick bamboo thickets beside us. The eyes flashed in the light of the flashlight. Time 2:30. The bonfire was long gone, very cold. I do not even remember when I was so cold. Andrew lit a fire, and, a little warm, I fell asleep again.
With the first rays of the sun wake up birds. Drops of dew, accumulating in the foliage of ancient trees, fall right on your face.
“Let's go for breakfast?” I joked. “Can I lie a little more? ..” Max joked. On this positive note, we rise from the cold wet clay. We are trying to wake the iron horses.
Max starts up right away, Andrei's motorcycle - in 10 minutes. My mine doesn’t catch the starter. I drove until I put the battery. Do not push on wet clay.Take the battery from the motorcycle Andrew. Wound up! We collect things, drink the last can of Burda - and go.
It turned out to be the right decision to spend the night, because the most difficult thing lies ahead. Towards noon, the locals are beginning to come across: women with children and wooden troughs behind their shoulders, and men with long-barreled guns. It means that there is a village nearby, and soon we will leave for it. Forgetting thirst, we get cameras.
The Lao Sung people live in these places. At first they turn away, but then they even pose. Water is not drunk, but charged with positive energy.
The road becomes smoother and straighter, traces of cars appear.
In the next village in the stall parts for mopeds buy oil. Gestures ask about the water. The seller - a puny lad - takes out two liters of bottles. We eagerly suck the contents and ask for more. Altogether, they drank and poured at least a dozen bottles into their skins, which led the enthusiast to delight. The whole village was watching with interest.