Friday, 5 August 2011

Colonial Dave and Restauranting in Luang Prabang

Welcome to Luang Prabang, Laos. A town not on the typical 'gap yah' backpacker's route, whose main Laotian destination, by the way, is the drunken town of Vang Vieng. Where the Happy Meal on the typical restaurant menu involves more highs and lows than a 'flying' Pink Power-Ranger toy - I still can't get over that particular childhood disappointment - but I digress. Anyway, Luang Prabang is rather more highbrow than its southern pot-head sister Vang Vieng. This is mostly seen by the type of traveler you run into here. To illustrate what I mean, I will describe the archetypal example, whom I will christen 'Colonial Dave'.

Now, 'Colonial Dave', as the name suggests, is to be found in colonial towns - Luang Prabang is perfect with its white French villas and antique shops. 'Colonial Dave', generally has a fondness for donning panama hats and wearing all white, all khaki, or a tasteful mix of khaki AND white - if he wishes to push the boat out. Incidentally, we bumped in to a 'Colonial Dave' who clearly had his collection of a white clothing washed with his wife's red dress. So he somewhat diverged from the typical uniform by boasting an all pink wardrobe - but the intention was there.

Anyway, G and I stick out like sore thumbs in the places 'Colonial Dave' likes to frequent. Us, with our grubby toes, Beer-Lao t-shirts and cheap jewelery. No, we are the 'Anti-Daves', and the sad thing is that the local barmen, restaurateurs and waiters also know just this. Indeed, we stumbled into a cafe, quite by mistake and ordered food. Expensive food. BUT, they served us free bread. Now, any savvy traveler will know that, if you eat ALL your free food, they will bring you MORE free food - hence, you have to pay LESS for expensive food. It's just simple maths. But the waiters realized just this, and with out extra bread basket, we also received snickering laughs as well as evils from Colonial Dave, who wished to enjoy his Alaskan Salmon without such grubby tramps to spoil his appetite. Disgusting.

On the same note, we got chucked out of a restaurant last night. It was monsoon. Monsoon is a sort of heavy rain that happens every year in Asia. We got chucked because we were wet. Because of the monsoon, which happens every year in Laos. We got chucked out, out into the rain. So upsetting.

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