After a good breakfast this morning we were picked up for our hour’s drive to the airport to catch our flight to Heho. A good flight with coffee croissant and cake as we descended over dry red farmed land in this mountainous region. We were met at the airport by our new guide, Wyn, and taken along a rough winding road through villages and paddy fields.
We stopped at our first monastery where monks were sitting cross-legged inside and going about their daily tasks.
We finally stopped for lunch in a small town that has become a centre for backpackers. We found ourselves sitting down to an interesting selection of local food, including chopped fish face! All good.
In the afternoon we were taken around a local market where we bought Green Tea and I bought a huge lump of charcoal for drawing! Eventually we found ourselves in a long boat speeding along the river to the lake passing local ishermen and people steering their boats by wrapping their leg around an oar creating a rudder… intriguing! We arrived in a village of houses built of bamboo above the lake on bamboo stilts. Here we were transferred, along with our luggage, to a wooden canoe, steered by the afore-mentioned leg, through narrow waterways through a village living such a simple way of life in bamboo houses built on stilts on the lake. They seemed to want for nothing as the lake provided them with all their needs for food. Such cheerful happy people, waving as we called out mingalaba (hello, maybe a mis spelling).
Eventually we returned to the motorised boat to be taken to our ‘hotel’ further down the lake. This was a luxury stilted affair which reminded me of Tree Tops in Kenya. We arrived through lotus flowers with flocks of Ibis, storks and Egrets which were nesting in their thousands in the trees behind. We checked in and were taken to our individual stilted cottage, where we relaxed on the balcony with a glass of duty free on ice and watched the red sun go down behind the mountains, with the last of the fishers in their pointed boats silhouetted against the pink evening sky. We lingered a while watching the last flocks of Ibis and swallows fly across our thatched roof to roost in the trees beyond, before we changed for dinner.
What a fabulous day!!