Trip Start Oct 27, 2008
33Trip End Oct 27, 2009
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Went on a mission today, needed toothpaste desperately so I went for a stroll before Same woke up, saying I'd only be ten minutes. After five minutes I drew out cash and found the toiletry road (the roads are set out where each road sells pretty much one thing, 8 stores selling sunglasses down one, 11 stores selling the same jewellery down another, 7 stores selling the same bags next to it, etc etc, but I digress..), and so thought another five minutes and I'd be back. Brilliant I thought, so I tried to sneak in a quick kebab for breakfast and took a detour back to the hotel. Couldn't find the kebab stall. Went round a few streets, in a few circles, still couldn't find it. Didn't recognise anywhere around me... so thought I would head back to the hotel. After forty minutes I realised I had lost my bearings and was absolutely completely lost amongst these little roads all looking so similar! I made the five minute journey last over an hour, but I eventually found the hotel again and all Sam did was laugh. I didn't mention I got lost trying to get a kebab until now...
This hotel has been brilliant so far too. Yesterday we had no running water at all, not the best scenario especially as Sam encouraged me to take a few laxatives (one movement a week isn't good) so the room smelled a bit funky and washing hands with bottled water got quite expensive. And today we woke up to no power! We did get a discount, and they've promised it will all be fine from now on, but it's not been the best stay so far.
Sam: Oh how i laughed when toad boy got lost. That will teach him. Spent a day and night in Hue before Hanoi which was ok. As we had limited time we decided to do a one day tour to see the main sights which was crap. Tomb after tomb after tomb where you didn't actually get to see any bodies. We also managed to book a tour full of families and their children. On the coach we sat in front of the most annoying family i have ever encountered, Their children were playing a wooden flute for hours. The more we tried to escape from them the more they followed us around. Overnight bus to Hanoi which was ok, slept most of the way. On the bus you can pay extra for a bed so we did, but there in rows of 5 with no space between them, i got there first to get the window and giles was next to me. Next to Giles was the tinniest oldest vietnamise man who (for some reason) cuddled right up to Giles. He was literally spooning him. Giles couldn't turn or move. I nearly died from laughing so much. The bus dumped us and ordered us off nowhere near the centre of Hanoi. After Giles navigation skills??!!! got us nowhere after 30 minutes i insisted on jumping in a cab. Got badly ripped off but i really didn't care at that point.
Like Giles said Hanoi is like Beijing. So busy and noisy, everywhere. There is no escape. I think i've got used to it but it can become very annoying and stressful. I like it here, just for its diversity. There is so much to look at and im always being shocked. Like when we saw tables of dead dogs in the process of being skinned or a man on the street carving a pineapple into the most obscure shape in 5 minutes. We've got ourselves a little routine at night... A few glasses of the cheapest beer in the world. Official. 11p. It smells and tastes like fish but after a couple you no longer taste it. Then a kebab or pho for a quid, cheap night.
Weather is a bit disapointing. Overcast and humid, even had rain. It should get better though.
Have a wonderful christmas!
Lots n lots n lots n lots of love, Gam and Siles xxx