Slicing the territory of my trip in half was the Nam Kham River. According to the map, to Google Earth and all the information I was able to gather, there was no road on the other side of the river.
My plan was, therefore, to take a boat downstream to Donkham and cut inland, up and westward toward Luang Prabang.
There was, of course, a road on the other side of the river and I hesitated before deciding not to take it, and take the boat instead. It was expensive, but worth it.
I felt that I needed some river time, some long moments of sitting and watching life go by, of watching villages and garden plots and people bathing. It didn't last long enough.
The village port of Donkham was a largish kind of place compared to the rest of the dots on the map. Pleasant, but I didn't want to stay there.
And so on I pushed into Khmu country.