Tane also got talking to another monk here, and learned that they get up at 4am each morning to meditate. It all felt very quaint and old-fashioned - until the monk's cellphone went off from inside his orange robes. That's modernisation for you, I guess.
We are now in the small town of Vang Vieng, the backpacking hub of Laos. It's a lovely place, but a bit strange as every bar has a large TV, and pretty much all of these are playing re-runs of Friends. We have even heard rumours of a cafe where you can see four episodes all at once. There is some fabulous countryside near Vang Vieng, though, that has made the stop off well worth it.