What Pegman Saw: Ox blood red

The bar’s corrugated iron walls were ox blood red, the roof patched with the hood of an old army truck and an oil drum beaten flat. It smelt of the Mekong – weed and runoff from the sugar factory a mile upstream.

Sunny nodded. “I’ll take it.”

The For Sale sign came down, tables and chairs brought in. Some nights a local band would play on the river bank – the bar was too small, too weak to hold them – the reedy voice of the khene reaching across the water to Thailand.

He imagined the music – the thread of his longing carried on the wind – drifting over her as she lay in bed, curled and dozing. Would she smile as she slept? Dream of her old love?

The bar would empty, the band clear a table to play cards. Sunny would sit alone on the river bank, his thoughts following the music and the wind.


Written for What Pegman Saw, the prompt that uses Google Street View. This week we visit Laos.


The Mekong River acts as a natural border between Laos and Thailand.

A stretch of the Mekong River was turned black earlier this year by the runoff from a sugar factory.

The Khene is a wind instrument local to Laos and Cambodia made from bamboo and used in traditional – often bawdy or satirical – folk music.


15 thoughts on “What Pegman Saw: Ox blood red

  1. Lovely, lovely, lovely! With only the faintest wisp of a plot you tug us irresistibly into a poignant tale of loss and separation. Well done, Lynn, this story is absolutely marvellous!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ah, thank you so much, Penny. What a very lovely comment. Glad the loss came through – that was the main thrust of the story. So glad you liked it and thanks so much for reading


  2. I love the bittersweet image of the heartsick man sending music across the border (the threads of his longing on the wind — perfect) to the woman he loves, hoping to reach her that way, to touch her heart if only indirectly.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. nice flow and I love the juicy snippets like “curled and dozing” and “music and the win”
    also – the sugar factory runoff has me curious – hmmmm


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.