When noon struck, I checked out of my hotel, stored my luggage, then headed to the beach, with a planned visit to the musuem afterwards
. I never made it to the museum. Instead, I stayed at the beach, which was known as "China Beach" during the war in Vietnam. Just like the tv series, this is where the military went for some R&R. My guidebook said that if you listen closely, you can still hear the ghosts from those times. Luckily I didn't. All I heard were the waves of the ocean and the constant sales pitches of the vendors, offering me everything from taxi service to beach chairs to cold drinks, everything but sex, which was a welcome relief.
Finally, off to the airport to be in Saigon, now officially known as Ho Chi Minh City.
The original plan was to go back to Hoi An by bus, then take a tour of the My Son (pronounced "Me Sun") ruins from the times of the Champa, a group from India that ruled over central Vietnam many centuries ago. I had to be at the tour agency by 8 am to catch the tour bus, which meant I had to leave Da Nang at 6 am, and hope there were no delays in the process. The only delay turned out to be me, as I got up at 5, but just couldn't get motivated, so went back to bed. I'm only out $4, no big deal. I figured I could go to the Champa Museum in Da Nang instead, which is said to host the finest pieces from the temples. Since I have to check out at noon, and my flight isn't until 7.40 pm, I figured it would be a good place to kill lots of time and make up for missing the tour.