Weird Places in Laos – The Scary Souksomphone Hotel in Attapeu.
Above Photo – Returning to the scene of the crime – Me at the Souksomphone Hotel in Attapeu.
On a recent trip into southern Laos I retraced the steps of the ill-fated British and American backpackers in my novel BACK, who head out from a small and weird town in southern Laos, called Attapeu, into the tri-border jungle, venturing towards the Ho Chi Minh Trail. They’re looking for something left behind from the Vietnam War, and find themselves in serious trouble as a result.
In the book, based the trekkers in the Souksomphone Hotel in Attapeu, having stayed there a couple of years ago, and it was a pretty unusual experience all round. I planned to also stay there on this visit – just for a night, although on arrival, I was shocked to find the hotel was closed. The proprietor told me he’s getting too old to manage it.
Still, he kindly opened it up for me and I was able to show him on my laptop how his hotel was now a star attraction in BACK, which he seemed very pleased about.
We took one last look around the stuffed animals and birds in the dark lobby area, before having a last check of the now-closed bedrooms, Heath-Robinson plumbing and rock-hard beds which, all of which I describe in the book.
Then we said a final goodbye. I’m pretty sure I’ll never be venturing back to Attapeu again if I can help it – it’s too much like hard work, as my backpackers also discovered to their cost in the novel.
For a modern-day take on the Vietnam War, POWs/MIAs and Adventure Backpackers trekking into the war-ravaged jungles of Asia see: http://peteralanlloyd.com/back-part-2/backpackers-meet-the-vietnam-war-back-screenplay-finally-finished/
And for POWs left behind in Laos:
© Peter Alan Lloyd
BACK Parts 1 and 2:
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