Karyn had a great time

Trip Start Dec 13, 2009
Trip End Apr 02, 2010

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Where I stayed
Hotel $18.00

Flag of Vietnam  ,
Monday, January 25, 2010

Perfect weather for our arrival in Nha Trang.  The Beach Capital of Vietnam. 

The taxi driver from the bus station beat us, but I don't imagine paying $3.00 for a $1.50 cab ride can be considered a serious problem. 

I am having some difficulty writing this blog as everything is going so well.  No one wants to read about nice sunny days on the beach.   Being lost at Sea in a storm would make much more interesting reading.  But nothing like that has happened.  At least, not yet.

  We did visit Vinpearl Park on a Island off Nha Trang.  A combination amusement park, very nice water park, a shopping area, a surprisely good Aquarium Display, some 3D productions, a beach, and of course, a mechanical bull which Leonard successfully rode.  Had a real good day there, once we got to the Island.

Karyn insisted we take the cable car to the island, even through there were perfectly good boats ferrying people back and forth.  Now, I am not necessarily afraid of Cable Cars, but I do avoid any ride at a fair that is more than 20 feet off the ground.  I mean, you can get killed on those things.   I did consider not going to the Island if I had to travel on this cable car.   Keep in mind, this particular cable car is so long that a hurricane could come up before a person got across and it is so high that it could probably be used as a satellite.  Karyn finally convinced me that I would be wise to accompany her on the cable car to the Island.  Something about, "if I ever wanted her to get on another motorbike in Vietnam, I better get on this Cable Car".   Only because I love my wife so much, did I agree to “chance it”.

Well the ride back from the island was OK.  By then I was a more confident that the thing would stay together and not fall to the ground.  I must admit I was little nervous on the ride over.   The Cable Car was stable and did not sway in the wind, but it made a terrible CLANG, every time it went over one of the towers.  And there were lots of towers.  I was not sure just how many clangs this cable car could take before something snapped.  Karyn laughed because I was sitting on floor for most of the ride, even after I explained to her that something fell out of my pocket and I spent my time down low looking for it.  She even started walking around inside the car trying to make it rock I expect, and muttering something about "payback".  Whatever that means.   The sign at the entrance said that the ride took so many minutes, but I suspect this was a misprint; as it seemed to take hours to safely reach the other side.  Once over, we had a great day.  Would have been perfect day, if only I could have stopped thinking about the cable car ride back.

The next day we did something a little more sensible,  went on a snorkel trip.  Good boat, good lunch, good group of people, even if the snorkeling was not that great.  A perfect day until we got back and Karyn fell getting off the boat.  She wasn’t hurt, at least not seriously, but she was a little disappointed in me.  Sure, I had her hand, but I only anticipated having to to steady her as she stepped off of the boat, not carry her to shore.  Also, the captain of the boat had her other hand, and he wasn’t able to catch her either.  Fortunately, both the captain and I saved ourselves and we didn’t come crashing onto the cement pier with Karyn.  And thankfully Karyn did not fall into water, If she had, I would have had to leave her there, as she would have killed me had she got out.  But all is well that ends well, and we had a great dinner that night, even if it was western food.

The next day Karyn suggested we go for a Mud Bath.  I told her flatly "NO".  This is something most men would not do;  it is something Leonard would never do.  Karyn reminded that I dropped her getting off the boat the day before and then she again reminded me that riding on a little motorcycle is very uncomfortable, and possibly something she may not be interested in doing again. 

Only because I love my wife so much, did I agree to a Mud Bath.  I mean, how bad can a mud bath be in a country where you do not know anyone..   But things got way worse after we arrived.  They suggested we might both enjoy a foot massage after our Mud Bath.  Not this guy....... if Karyn wanted one, fine, but I wasn’t going to…..Well guess what.  We talked about motorcycle travel again and I ended up agreeing to the foot massage. 

So here is how it all went:  First we put on our swimsuits, had a shower, and spent 45 agonizing minutes in a tub full of mud.  Then we had another shower (a long one to get all the mud off).  Getting the mud off was easy, getting the mud out from inside my swimsuit was next to impossible.  You would think they would give you private showers for this.  (A little embarrassing opening the front of your swimsuit to let the shower water run through and then peeking down to see if there is any mud left.  I was just waiting for someone ask if I lost anything down there.   

After I was sure all the mud was gone, off we went to the mineral bath.  This was kind of nice, like a hot tub, but with no current and bundles of red hot herbs floating around in the water.  .  A real nice private setting.   

45 minutes later that was finally over.

Next two very pretty young women took us to a little foot massage hut and told us to take off our clothes.  Now I don’t know where Vietnamese think tourists feet are located, but I couldn’t understand why I had to remove my bathing suit to get a foot massage.. They noticed I was a little uncomfortable so one of then held up a towel for Karyn and I to stand behind while changing into the shorts they offered.  Karyn got shorts and a top.  But you have to picture this towel.  It is about the same size as the one we use at home to dry dishes. It would have barely covered me when I was six years old, and there wasn't a chance it would cover me now. 

Guess what.  You got it.... Karyn talked about our planned motorcycle tour again. So I put on the frilly shorts they gave me and smiled all the way through my foot massage.  Except during the part where she was jabbing my foot with what looked like a center punch.  I think that pretty young lady was just trying to see how much pain a Canadian could stand. 

The ordeal finally ended.  Back to our Hotel to pack for the night sleeper bus.  Really looking forward to this.

Around 7 PM, as planned our sleeper bus arrived.  I researched this very carefully and we visited the bus Station two days previous to "hand pick" our seats.  We were to be on this bus for 12 hours, so we wanted the best seats, on the best bus possible.  It all worked terriffic.  Until the bus arrived.  It was nothing like the bus in the picture, and there was no assigned seating..We just barely got through the door and the bus took off with us still trying to figure out what happened, on this almost full bus.

A sleeper bus has a single row of beds on each side of the bus as well as a single row down the middle.  And all two tier.  Well Karyn and I made the best of what wasn't starting out so good.  I took a top bunk in the center row with Karyn more or less beside me on a top bunk against the window.  Karyn soon became more stressed, while I was still trying to make the best of an annoying situation.  Once we got out of town, all interior lights were turned off and most people were already going to sleep.  I was very content, up in my top bunk, rocking and rolling with the bus on these mountain roads, and working with my computer.  Screen looked great in this dark bus so I started editing some pictures. 

An hour later, someone poured a bucket of water over me and my computer.  At least that is what I initially thought happened.  My seat/bed was located directly under a large vent which might have been the return for the Air Conditioning.  Well I guess they have some sort of a drip tray in there, which overflowed when the bus took a sharp curve.  (The computer is very difficult to turn on now.  Hopefully I can make it last until I get back to Canada.  If not I will purchase a new one as I can not imagine travelling without one) 

I put the computer away, and laid in my bed for the rest of the night bracing myself for the next waterfall.  It would happen everytime the bus slowed down quickly or turned sharply.  About every 10 or 15 minutes.  I kept myself covered with the blanket, which worked until the blanket was completed soaked and my pants underneath were also wet.  This vent was about 24" wide and 36" long and I never knew just where the water would pour down from.  No solution until about 4 AM the next morning when someone got off the bus and I took their space.  Needless to say, this was not a very pleasant trip.  I think this might be the last sleeper bus I ever go on.  I know Karyn will never be on one again.

Finally arrive in Hoi An, very tired, and checked into a very nice hotel.  And had a long hot shower.



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Lee Marion on

Had to return from Phoenix-need gallbladder surgery. We couldn't open your blog there. I am enjoying reading it here.
I guess you can thank your lucky stars that Karyn wasn't under that commercial waterfall.

Bob Carter on

Just returned from 6 weeks vacation in Phoenix. Really enjoying your e-mails.
What a life experience you two are having. Keep sending. Bob

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