Ninh Binh - Cheeky Madam
Trip Start Dec 27, 2008
50Trip End Jun 27, 2009
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Tam Coc is named 'Halong Bay on the rice paddies' probably because the scenery is similarly stunning and the boat trip takes you on an hour ride through the huge rock formations surrounded by the locals farming the rice, it's very picturesque and you feel as if you're really in the heart of the country.
"You buy drink?" they asked. "no thanks" we said. "drink for him, drink for Madam (our extra, elderly rower), they asked. I guess most would feel sorry for "madam" and buy her a drink, but we knew that after we had been dropped off and drove away, she would have sold it back to them for half the price. Clever little madam! Once we'd turned around, still feeling guilty but hard-nosed, we spent the rest of the ride stopping side by side with other boats containing westerners and swapping our elderly scammer with another who would then offer us her tablecloths or doilies. We passed.
After that we drove to the Hoa Lu, the country's former capital.
Ninh Binh is a haven of quiet compared to Hanoi, until you sit in the internet cafe i'm in now. I'm surrounded by screaming kids frantically bashing the keyboard, they're playing some dance game on the net. They're all giggling at me, what's so funny? Charlotte thinks they think i'm Prince Harry!
Where I stayed