Monday, June 13, 2011

Journey to Sekong and Champassak

Andrew 3 weeks ago travelled for a week down to the southern provinces of Sekong and Champassak (and I have been waiting for him to write up his travels himself – but that hasn't happened - so I am giving a little help)
The view of the road: from an air conditioned late model vehicle.  Andrew nabbed the front seat for the journey because "someone had the gall to sit in the front last trip and SLEEP the whole way"  The things missing from this picture are livestock wandering on the road and kamikaze motorbike riders, otherwise it's just your usual day on the road here.

After a full day driving from VTE south, they stayed in boutique accommodation in the coffee growing area. The Sinouk Resort is a little oasis in the middle of dusty roads and paddy fields.

Although he did make comment on the size of the bathrooms – you could touch all the walls while standing in one spot

There were more visits to provincial and district health operations. People were all passionate about what they were doing, but they had few resources. Electrical wires had been strung from the village houses to the clinic to power the refrigerator that housed the medicines, but power outages were common.

 Health centre facilities were basic. If you look at the picture below you can see daylight seeping through the large gaps in the walls.  Not that that was an issue - there were no windows anyway

 On the plus side: travelling with the Bank means a higher standard of accommodation and food – he had boutique resorts, high rise multi-star hotels in Pakse, and a great French restaurant in Pakse. When I travelled with project staff (trying to keep the most of their per diem allowances they didn't want to splash out on anything) we stayed in basic accommodation and never visited a French restaurant (and the baguette stall for breakfast does not count as a French restaurant!)


He is now busily collating the information into an intelligent report.

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