Life moves slow in Laos, especially southern Laos, and that goes double for Don Det in the low season. Restaurant tables aren't cleared until you get up to pay or leave, meaning the plates and glasses remain for hours if your conversations are lasting that long. It is the polar opposite of food service in western countries. My first exposure to such service was in Costa Rica, so it wasn't an unfamiliar experience.
Nicholas, Caroline, and Celene wanted to walk to a waterfall at the southern end of the island just south of Don Det (and connected by a bridge). Normally I'd be too lazy to take on such an adventure, which was why I value the motivation of others! The walk turned out to be quite beautiful, if a little exhausting. Most people rent bicycles for the trip, but we decided it would be too much of a hassle given all the mud.
We walked through bright green rice paddies, across the old train bridge (built by the French), and to the raging waters of what I think was still the Mekong River.
After the waterfall, we headed back, in no rush at all because no one else is on the islands.
There were tons of great photo opportunities, and Celene was just as snap-happy as me, only she was using a new Canon SLR which made a cool clicky noise with each shutter release. She sounded like a true professional.
Eventually, we stopped at a restaurant by the bridge for a local delicacy – pumpkin burgers. I don't like pumpkins at home, but the Lao ones tasted different, and dare I say better! It was served on a baguette, a sign of France's lingering culinary influence in this country.