Today I joined the Stray bus. They took us through to Houay Xai. We hopped on the bus as 9am and head straight towards Chiang Rai where we went to the white temple.
The white temple was really impressive. The structure is highly decorated, which loads of shapes, edges and add ons. In the entrance to the temple there is a bridge. On the sides there are thousands of hands coming up from the ground. This is meant to represent the evil coming out to collect the evil spirits and people. The bridge (also known as the gateway to heaven) lead into the temple where there was a Buddha on the wall, a statue of one and then a wax work of a monk.
After this stop we head straight to the Thailand/Laos boarder. Here we had to exchange Thai baht for US dollars as the hoarder control only accept US dollar for a visa. As I have to get a Cambodian and Vietnam visa I exchanged 3500baht for 100dollars. At first however, the woman asked for 3651 baht. Once she gave me the receipt I packed away my remaining money. As I like to keep track of my withdrawals, I comings and outgoings I took a pen to write down the baht exchange. When I looked st the receipt I realised that actually it said 3500 baht. I then questioned the lady and she flustered and said oh and gave me 151 baht back (which happened to be left out from the 3500 she had put in the till). I was shocked and dissapointed. So many people have tried to scam me off since my travels but fortunately most of the time I have kept my wits and noticed their tricks.
Once exchanging our dollars we went to get our visa. Two of the girls left to the gate to enter Laos and realised they had stuck the visas to the wrong passports. They then had to go back and get it sorted. As it was freshly pressed down I think it was fairly easy to peel off and rectify. I’m just glad it wasn’t my passport!
Upon arrival arrival at the guesthouse we were shown around the very small town (basically a street). We were told about the plans for the following days and had decided to make the slow boat trip a bit more fun we would buy cheap bottles of vodka and play card games.