It’s 19 h 30, I’m going with Shampoo in the hotel truck to pick up two customers at the international airport in Luang Prabang. A fonctional small airport, but not ultra modern. We are waiting for thirty minutes and fifteen passengers exit from arrival door. It was a minibus or a plane? Shampoo offer a transport for passengers who don’t know where to sleep. we returns to the hostel with 5 clients instead of two originally planned. Bravo Mr Shampoo your hotel is a proof that with a little effort, good prices, activities and a smile can be successfully attract customers who leave happy.
After my meeting with Tiger Trails that confirming that there was no position open for at least two months. I begin to think of returning home to Canada for a strong come back. My bank account is in the red, my passport is almost full (it only remains two blank pages) and in Canada it’s summer with hot sunny weather. In short, all of this points push me to leave. It’s with a bunch of regret that I resign myself to abandon my plan again to reside permanently in South East Asia. There a job already waiting for me in the country and it will be easier to work with my partner effectively. We will plans our company operation and communication system Better for my next visit in Asia.
Finally some good news, Shampoo proposes to me to work with him on the promotion of his hotel and Southeastasiabackpackers.com at my return from Canada in six months. He can’t offer me a fortune as a salary, but a place to stay, a visa and a work permit that can distresses me to run every months to have a new visa.
Speaking of « overstay » I go to the small outpost of immigration to add 10 days to my visa. Here we need the big visa sticker the first month and we have the right to be stamped 2 times for a period of one month before exiting the country to get a new official visa. The office is tiny and it’s open from 10 to 12 and from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. It’s a police headquarters and immigration center. If you go before its expiry date you pay $ 2 a day instead of $ 10 penalty a day so do not forget to check your visa expiration dates. This will avoid you problems and to throw your money in the trash. A special customs officer is at the desk, because at Luang Prabang the police and military can hold several titles at once. I asked an extension of 10 days. He looks at my passport and he said: « It not remains lot of room in. » He came out some « Liquid Paper« , I said « oh no there are two other pages at the beginning. » It’s all over and changes the dates of my previous visa extension in less than 2 seconds. It makes me see my passport, work is well-done, but I ask: « Are you sure I would have no problem leaving the country. » He assures me not. I tell myself that I have no choice and the customs officer at the border should understand because it is a special visa stamp of Luang Prabang headquarter.
My plane ticket is almost confirmed for early July. My idea is to leave Thailand to avoid an « overstay » in Laos again …maybe visit Chiang Mai, because I’ve never seen this supposes to be mythical city. After I may take the train to Bangkok for $ 413 baht ($ 14) or the plane for a small amount of 1,300 baht ($ 44). I check the local hotels on hostelworld.com. Is a good way to find a cheap hotel, while checking the percentage of appreciation and criticism of travelers who have stayed there.
July 29th, I received an email from my partner confirming my return ticket for $ 1,200 Canadian from Bangkok on July 8th at 5:40 pm to go directly to Quebec. Time passes quickly and I must plan my itinerary and costs to be sure not to miss my plane. Already almost 30 days I expect my new ATM card. It’s officially lost somewhere in the abyss of some post office somewhere.