Trip Start Sep 01, 2010
142Trip End Jun 18, 2011
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One of the first things we noticed about Hue is that the touts here are hard-core. From the second we got off the bus we were bombarded by touts trying to sell us everything from motorbikes, water, bracelets, hats, drugs and hotel rooms. Even the manager at our hotel was heavy-duty and didn’t stop hasseling us about booking onto a guided tour of the city during our entire stay, so much so that in the end we were starting to get really hacked off at him. It probably sounds like a really minor thing but after a while the touting becomes a bit much, especially when you get touted 20 times in the space of 5 minutes and sometimes it upsets Tom a lot as he is always the target of every tout because they think he is just a rich white man. I understand that the touts in Hue were only being so heavy because it is the low season and they are really struggling for customers, but it made us feel really uncomfortable and unfortunately marred our time in Hue. Having said this we did find a really nice little café which became our favourite place to eat and we returned there every night for dinner and the amazing Vietnamese coffee. We became friends with the waitresses and when we saw a huge rat running down the road one night we had fits of giggles when they tricked a fellow customer into thinking that it wasn’t actually a rat….it was a Vietnamese kangaroo. The customer fell for their joke and we had to try really hard not to laugh when they said ‘I didn’t know there were kangaroos in Vietnam’!
Hue is considered the historical heart of Vietnam; before the Emperor was forced to give up his crown in 1945 by the Communist Party, Hue was Vietnam’s capital and home to the Emperor and his familyhttp://web.me.com/keisele)
Over the next few days we started to get ourselves organized for our month in China; we are trying to learn some basic Mandarin Chinese (which is pretty much the most difficult language ever conceived) but we aren’t doing too badly and can say a couple of words. We have also devised a time-schedule of our time in China and are trying to make the most of our time there whilst also remembering that we can’t travel as fast as we used to anymore because we are starting to reach the end of our traveling limit now. We think we have managed to strike a nice balance but we won’t know for sure until we get to China and re-evaluate our surroundings and how we are feeling. Having said all this, by the time we left Hue a few days later we were so incredibly excited about our time in China we cannot wait to get there. I think we will need some Energiser batteries to keep us going though because we are going to have tons of stuff to do. Warning: I think the blog is going to be very busy during our month in China, I hope you’re all ready!