1. Your definition of the word “VIP” is very open to interpretation.

The waiting area of the Huay Xai bus station of our own personal hell.
The waiting area of the Huay Xai bus station aka our own personal hell.

2. The sound of locals hocking up loogies all night puts you right to sleep.

3. You enjoy spooning with complete strangers in a 5×3 feet wide bunk.

Stop. Don't touch me there. This is my private square.
Stop. Don’t touch me there. This is my private square.

4. You are rocked to sleep with the constant and sudden breaking of the driver.

5. The presence of live poultry on board relaxes you.

6. You prefer loud karaoke lullabies sung at the top of the driver’s lungs in Laos at 2am in the morning.

Just remember: we did this to ourselves...
After my picture fades and darkness has turned to gray, watching through windows, you’re wondering if I’m OK…

7. The sub-zero AC temperature is a perfect match for your cold, dead heart.

Dead. Dying. Death.
Dead. Dying. Death.

8. You prefer brushing your teeth outside a questionable rest stop in the middle of nowhere with the constant fear of being left behind.

Nowheresville, Population: You.
Nowheresville, Population: You.

9. You are a social butterfly and are comforted by the company of an overstuffed bus with locals standing in the aisle.

Is this what dying feels like?
Is this what dying feels like?

10. You have a slight foot fetish and enjoy random people gently grazing your extremities as they pass by like two ships in the night.

11. You put complete and utter trust in the hands of Laos teenage drivers along the windy and treacherous roads leading to Luang Prabang.

12. You are a sadomasochist and wish to inflict as much physical, emotional and psychological pain as humanly possible on yourself while backpacking through South East Asia.

Why did we do this? Because we hate ourselves.
Why did we do this? Because we hate ourselves.

This joint post has been brought to you by the crushed hopes and dreams of Western travelers: The Passive Observer, Josh and Becky– bunk mates in overnight buses and single bed hotel partners in life.