You want? Limited Edition Collectable Nick Cave Pop Art mannequin here:
Batter my heart, three-personed God; for you
as yet but knock, breathe, shine, and seek to mend.
That I may rise and stand, o'erthrow me and bend
your force to break, blow, burn and make me new.
I, like an usurped town, to another due,
labor to admit you, but, oh, to no end;
reason, your viceroy in me, me should defend,
but is captived and proves weak or untrue.
Yet dearly I love you and would be loved fain,
but am betrothed unto your enemy:
divorce me, untie or break that knot again,
take me to you, imprison me, for I,
except you enthrall me, never shall be free,
nor ever chaste, except you ravish me.
If you ever do make it to Laos, you MUST get to Luang Prabang for Laos New Year in APril. Just trust me. (For $2.50 per person Seng Phet guesthouse offers comfortable beds, and fun staff - that means you, Phat!). Then jump in a truck/bus and head straight up to Muong Kaou, (spoil yourself at the the Riverside Bungalows for $30 bucks, or Sunshine guesthouse for $3 - the view is the same), then hop in a boat upstream to Muong Nuoi, a village devoid of cars and motorbikes, and running electricity only two hours per day. (We highly recommend staying with the adorable family who run Niksa's Bungalow.)
Ban Na village is an hours walk from here through tropical forest and hazy rice fields. The cave along the way is surrounded by crystal clear water you wont be able to resist, unless you happen to be a monk and are scared off by the awesomeness of approaching women. (The whole monk\female aversion is selective at best - i've been leered, giggled and waved at by groups of young novices just as i would at any western construction site..the difference, it seems, is the presence of a Senior Monk to keep a lid on things.)
Sadly we had to leave Laos after three weeks, and headed over to Chiang Mai, and up to Maddie's beloved Chiang Dao Lodge at Ban Ba Bong near Chiang Dao. ITs a bit of a anti-climax heading back into Thailand with its noise, smelly streets and aggressive touts, but at least we were spared that up at Tim and Steve's Lodge. Unfortunatley we havent been spared a nasty bout of gastro that has hit us all over the past few days since we have been back in Bangkok, and are desparately trying to shake it before our flight to London tonight.
I guess that's that all i have time to write before my internet access expires, and we still have to pack to make the plane in time. Apologies for lack of personal emails, but am thinking of you all heaps and looking forward to catching up with our friends in Europe.
( And for the record, phousi massage is fabulous).