ADVrider

Go Back   ADVrider > Riding > Ride reports
User Name
Password
Register Inmates Photos Site Rules Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 02-10-2012, 11:38 PM   #1
Jedum1 OP
Adventurer
 
Jedum1's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2010
Location: Rancho Santa Margarita, Ca
Oddometer: 88
2010 North Vietnam on a Minsk

Hey guys and gals,

This is going to be my first ride report. I'm not really sure how to go about it though. Would you guys prefer a more detailed report filed with all the minutia, or are pics with captions more your thing? The first few days of my trip I wasn't on the Minsk, but I did have some amazing experiences on a rented scooter. It's still two wheels and a motor right? Same, same. Anyway, just let me know what you want to see.

Here's a taste of things to come.

Roughly twenty miles out of Hanoi.


Found this place a few miles off the paved road I was on. Thought it was a little storefront (due to the beer display out front), but it turned out to be someones home. Just sitting all by itself in the middle of a beautiful valley. They didn't speak any english, and I all I could say was hello, and thank you, but we hung out drinking tea for forty five minutes.


My trusty (sort of) steed. At 6'8" I was really concerned about a Soviet area 125cc surviving the trip. Other than a torn seat, a few missing bolts, a temperamental clutch, and an unreliable head light, it lived up to it's reputation. I would totally park one of these next to my KLR.


Had my breakfast on a riverbank one day. This was my view.


Was invited to have a beer at a rice farmers home. This is what his wife prepared for us. These little guys live in the rice patties, and boy are the good!


I don't know where this was, because I was totally lost at the time. Life in the country is hard. Country life in Vietnam, is ridiculously hard! Some how these kids make the best of it. Any time I ran across children in the North, they had smiles ear to ear. Trips like this put a lot of things in perspective.


Roads in North Vietnam range from downright deadly, to outrightly spiritual.


Ban Gioc waterfall cuts right through the Vietnamese, Chinese border. Cross the river, go to jail.
(Video)


I'll fill in the blanks as time permits. Just let me know how much you want filled.

Cheers,
Jed
Jedum1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-11-2012, 04:22 AM   #2
TwoUpTourer
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Joined: Jan 2010
Oddometer: 108
Doin just fine - more of the same

Hey Jed
Great post!
I'm off to the north if Vietnam next month, unfortunately not on two wheels, just making the most of some very cheap tickets we got last year, so pretty much a scouting expedition for next time I hope.

The pictures are truly beautiful and inspiring, and the captions don't go astray either.
john
TwoUpTourer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-11-2012, 04:32 AM   #3
luckychucky
Studly Adventurer
 
luckychucky's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2011
Location: SE Missouri
Oddometer: 924
Nice Pics

Love the country side. Really cross the river, go to jail?
luckychucky is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-11-2012, 11:34 AM   #4
Jedum1 OP
Adventurer
 
Jedum1's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2010
Location: Rancho Santa Margarita, Ca
Oddometer: 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by TwoUpTourer View Post
Hey Jed
Great post!
I'm off to the north if Vietnam next month, unfortunately not on two wheels, just making the most of some very cheap tickets we got last year, so pretty much a scouting expedition for next time I hope.

The pictures are truly beautiful and inspiring, and the captions don't go astray either.
john
It's a shame you won't be riding out there. There are too many forks, and unpaved side roads to count! I'd recommend getting out of the bigger cities as soon as you can. They're becoming more and more westernized each day. Once you start heading North the western tourist herds thin pretty quickly though. Try getting to as many out of the way towns as you can. Communication is difficult, but well worth it.
At one point I stopped to eat in a little village that wasn't on my map. Keep in mind that I only had a crappy tourist map, so most towns weren't on it. Everyone was completely amazed by the fact that I was there. No one spoke any english, but a few of the guys gestured for me to come and eat with them.


They were all on there cell phones trying to get people to come down and meet me. One of the people that came, was an English teacher at the local boarding school. Most of the English she knew was from reading, and listening to the radio, so it was pretty broken. She had never met a native English speaker in her life, and she was teaching kids how to speak it. Turned out they were all teachers from the school.


I ended up spending spending my whole day with them.


No joke. These guys dominate at volleyball. They invited me to play, but I was way to intimidated.


After the volleyball matches, they invited me to coffee. Something most have been lost in translation, because all that kept showing up was rice wine and beer.



They even helped me book this awesome hotel room. The best in town, i'm told.


Yes, that's what the bed looked like when I walked into the room. Hotels in the North don't always wash the sheets between guests. They never did in my case. If you are going to stay in out of the way hotels, I'd recommend bringing your own sheet and pillow case.

Have fun out there. It's a beautiful country, with really kind hearted people.
Jedum1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-11-2012, 11:51 AM   #5
Jedum1 OP
Adventurer
 
Jedum1's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2010
Location: Rancho Santa Margarita, Ca
Oddometer: 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by luckychucky View Post
Love the country side. Really cross the river, go to jail?
Well, only if you get caught. All joking aside, I was told that the Chinese don't play around in that region. I heard a number of different scenarios. Everything from never being heard from again, to immediate deportation. Granted all of this information was second hand. Regardless of what the outcome could have been, I was happy with the view from the Vietnamese side.
Jedum1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-11-2012, 06:03 PM   #6
henderson
Adventurer
 
Joined: Nov 2011
Oddometer: 24
more please

this is a great report. pictures are fascinating. keep it coming, thanks.
henderson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-11-2012, 06:40 PM   #7
danceswithcages
Gnarly Adventurer
 
danceswithcages's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2009
Location: Missoula Montucky
Oddometer: 254
Excellent start!

Keep your story coming!

Remember- no such thing as too many pictures!
__________________
Gotta keep rollin'
Gotta keep ridin'
Keep searchin' 'til I find what's right
danceswithcages is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-11-2012, 07:00 PM   #8
Cordless
Two Wheel Addict
 
Cordless's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2006
Location: Spokane WA
Oddometer: 2,013
I vote for minutiae. The more you can give us your impressions and experiences, the better.

I would also like to see YOU in some of the photos to see how a man of your stature looks mixed into the local populations. (I am only 6' 6" but seeing you would give me an idea of how it would feel to be there).

Also, how about the back story. How you got there, why you are there. How you ended up on a Minsk (rascally little Minx, that bike).

Thank you for taking the time to post.

(I teach English too.)

Cordless screwed with this post 02-13-2012 at 10:16 AM
Cordless is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-12-2012, 10:23 AM   #9
Jedum1 OP
Adventurer
 
Jedum1's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2010
Location: Rancho Santa Margarita, Ca
Oddometer: 88
Thanks for the kind words guys. I'm not much of a writer, but I'll try and cram as much as I can into my upcoming posts. I'll back everything up with as many pics as possible. It's been a while so I have to piece it all together from fragmented memories, notes, and video journals. Should have the first few days up by Thursday.

Cheers,
Jed
Jedum1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-12-2012, 07:36 PM   #10
abone
Obsessed
 
abone's Avatar
 
Joined: Dec 2011
Location: Vancouver B.C. and Edmonton Alberta
Oddometer: 24
Suscribing....and looking forward to future updates. I am envious.
abone is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2012, 02:51 PM   #11
Jedum1 OP
Adventurer
 
Jedum1's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2010
Location: Rancho Santa Margarita, Ca
Oddometer: 88
Day 1 and 2

This is a ride report for a trip I took through North Vietnam back in 2010. I wasn’t on the Minsk the entire time, but I’m including details and photos from the entire sixteen-day trip, because of the profound impact it had on me. This trip was a life changer. It ignited my passion for riding, and tested me in ways I could have never imagined. I feel as though I’ve received a disproportionate amount of information, and advice from members on this forum, and I feel it’s time to give back. I hope you enjoy it.

First some background. I’m pretty new to riding. In fact, prior to this trip I had only ridden in the dirt a handful of times when I was a kid, and never on the street. So what possessed me to find a Russian Minsk in Communist Vietnam, and ride alone to the Northern most tip of the country? I wish I had some amazing brush with death epiphany story, but it ultimately came down to a chance viewing of a Long Way Down clip on Youtube. After following a bunch of unrelated links I ended up at Charley and Ewan shaking hands at the Equator. This was a good three years after the show aired on the BBC, but I had never heard anything about it. It sounded interesting, so I got a hold of the DVDs. After watching the first series, I was completely preoccupied with thoughts riding to the farthest corners of the planet.

I now had the inspiration, what next? Simple. Figure out where to go, book a flight then take a weekend riding course. I love South East Asia, and had never been to Vietnam, so it seemed like an obvious choice. I’ve always hated tour buses, and exotic locales littered with people that look just like me. The more removed from Western Influence the better. Although Hanoi was a big tourist destination, it didn’t appear that the areas to the North shared the distinction. It was settled. I’d fly into Hanoi, pop down to Hoi An (Central Vietnam) for the full moon lantern festival, then back to Hanoi where I would rent a bike, and ride until I saw China. Here’s how it played out.

DAY 1

Landed In Hanoi exhausted but excited. At 6’8”, airplane seats don’t agree with me, so I don’t tend to sleep. Between flight time and layovers I’d been up for about 28 hours. Fortunately setting foot in another country always seems to knock the fatigue down a bit. Had to catch my regional flight to Da Nang, so no time to relax. I only had a thirty-five minute window to make the flight, so I’m glad we landed on time. Things went smoothly at the airport, and two hours later I was in Da Nang. I had read that you should avoid the queue at the front of the airport and head to the left for a cab. Worked like a charm. Only waited a minute or two before one came rolling by. Agreed on a price ($15), showed him the name of my hotel, and we were off. Took about forty minutes to get to the hotel on the outskirts of Hoi An. In that time I began to feel a real sense of self doubt. This was the first time in my life I had ever traveled alone, and the fear of facing this trip sans a wingman slowly started to overwhelm me. Although I tried to put it out of my thoughts, I just couldn’t shake the nagging feeling that I had bitten off more than I could chew. This was bad. I’d only been in the country for two and a half hours, and I had sixteen days ahead of me.

The very first shot in Vietnam. Just outside the airport in Da Nang.


I arrived at the hotel, in a mild state of depression/regret/fear/panic. I took a minute, collected myself, and decided the best way to get past this was to head in to town. I rented a scooter from the hotel ($10 a day) and headed out. After a few wrong turns, and an incident with an ATM that I was convinced triple billed me, I ended up in the heart of Hoi An. The town was gorgeous, but it was saturated with tourists. Many of them throwing back beer, and living it up. Everything I was feeling earlier was increasing by orders of magnitude. If I had come with friends it would have been great, but I had no friends here. I was alone. It seemed like everyone there was either in their early twenties, or retirement age. At thirty-eight I didn’t feel as though I could relate to any of them. I felt like some kind of awkward tweener, completely out of my element. Being 6’8” didn’t help matters. When you are feeling insecure, having people continually point while whispering to their friends and giggling doesn’t exactly build confidence. This was terrible. Here I was surrounded by people, yet I felt more isolated and alone than at any point in my life.

I hoped that getting some food on my stomach would cheer me up a bit. I grabbed some food at Ms Nam’s on the riverfront. It was at the head of a number of small outdoor food stalls, similar to a Hawker Centre in Singapore. Each of the ten or so small restaurants has the exact same menu, but each is owned independantly. I heard that the quality was all over the map on any given day, depending who was preparing the food. I don’t remember what I had, but I remember being happy with it. Unfortunately it didn’t have the positive emotional effect I had hoped for.

(VIDEO)


After a few hours of wandering around aimlessly I retrieved the scooter and headed back to the hotel. What should have taken two minutes stretched well beyond thirty. I don’t think I could have gotten more lost if I tried. Nothing looked familiar. It seemed that after three or four turns, I would return to a location that was five turns back. I was already in a horrible state of mind, and this just made things worse. I used to have an uncanny sense of direction, but I had been taking medication for chronic pain that affected my cognitive abilities, and probably my state of mind. Not the best thing to be on when you’re planning to ride through Vietnam with nothing but a crappy one page map of the entire country. But I digress.

In the depressed state I was in I found it hard to find the motivation to shoot much.

My ride for the day. This little 110 Wave is a pretty common site in the bigger cities.


Hoi An sits right on the water. Hence the people in boats.










Okay, let’s wrap this day up. These are supposed to be inspiring, not depressing after all. Long story short, the first day sucked. I was lonely, exhausted, and depressed. What the hell was I doing traveling alone? I obviously wasn’t cut out for solo travel. What was I thinking? How on earth could I have fun without a bunch of drinking buddies, or my wife to back me up? How could I maintain this level of despair for sixteen days? It sounds overly dramatic, but that day was one of the worst in my life. That night I seriously contemplated booking a flight home.

DAY 2

I woke up around 4:30am and I remembered that I had the ability to shoot video on my new Canon 7D. Don’t ask me why, but that single realization got me out of my funk. The fact that I had finally gotten some sleep may have also helped. I was suddenly fired up. My original plan was to just hang out in the town for a few days until festival, but after what I went through the day before, I decided to get out of Dodge. Wasn’t that the original point after all? Get off the beaten path. Get away from the pale faces, and embrace the unkown. After trying to figure out what I would do for a few minutes, I remembered this really cool mountain we drove by on the way to the hotel. Flat as far as the eye could see, then a mountain of stone in the middle of nowhere. It was settled. I’d take the scooter I rented the day before and find that mountain.

I hit the road at about 6am, and although I didn’t see any tourists, there were plenty of locals up and about. At one point on the main road out of town one of them flagged me down. I pulled over to see what was up, and he jumped on the back. Okay, guess I’m giving him a ride. After three or four miles he motioned for me to take a left onto a dirt road. Another few miles on the dirt and we stopped at a small shop. He kept motioning for me to come in, as did the other men tending the storefront. Still don’t know if he just wanted the ride, or saw an opportunity to wrangle in a wide-eyed tourist. Regardless, I politely waved and headed back to the main road. Not more than a few miles down the road I get another request to pull over.

This time it’s from a young woman riding beside me. She keeps pointing at the back of my scooter. We park off to the side and she grabs the tripod I had lashed to the back. “No good! No good!” Then she went to work. She got it off in a flash, but didn’t seem to do a much better job than I did re-securing it. She asked me all the normal questions. “Where you from? Where your wife? What you do in Vietnam?” I told her I wanted to get to the big rock mountain. She excitedly told me that it was called the Marble Mountains (there’s five of them), and that her family had a shop at the base of the one that I had driven by in the cab. She hopped on her scooter and motioned me to follow. At this point in the trip I was still very much in the “What’s the angle” mode. I was sure that once we got there she would try and extort some kind of parking fee. I followed nonetheless.

The base of the mountain was littered with shops. Every one virtually identical. An entire community built around carved marble, and limestone trinkets. Budhas, and foo dogs were the go-to items, but there were also jewelry boxes, chess boards, dogs, birds, water buffalo and even crucifixes (The French brought Catholicism with them, and it’s still going strong). Although they all claimed to do the work themselves, I only saw a few shops actually chipping away at stone.





After parking the scooter, I waited for the other shoe to drop. “Safe. Safe. You leave here. Buy ticket there.” Not one word about a parking fee. I thanked her four or five times, then headed to the little booth at the base of a long steep flight of stairs. I forked over the Dong (Vietnamese currency) equivalent of one-ish dollars and began the long trek up the limestone stairs to the top. It quickly became apparent that I was one of only four people on the entire mountain. The place was empty, with exception of an old woman tending a temple at the midway point, and two female drink vendors setting up at the top.

The fact that this was obviously a tourist destination had eluded me until I saw the two vendors. I don’t know why it hadn’t sunken in when I waded through the shops below. I guess going from the deepest depression of my life, to the euphoria of being out and about with purpose had overwhelmed my senses. This was obviously a huge tourist spot, and I was the only tourist here! For over an hour I had the entire place to myself. I regret not taking more pictures, but I really needed to decompress and just take it all in.

View from the main highway.


This temple sat at about the half way point on the mountain.


Just in front of the temple was this small pool that overlooked the ocean.


These guys overlooked the pool.







This sits about twenty yards from the temple, and is visible from the road below.









One problem with the bigger cities of Vietnam, not unlike any other developing country, is that tourism has turned many of the helpful locals into helpful “for a price” locals. I Saw this in Hoi An, Da Nang, and Hanoi. Please don’t think I’m judging these people. After all they have to make a living. It just creates a defensive posture (for me at least) that leads to apprehension, and distrust. I know what your thinking. “What about the helpful girl that let you park at her shop? Stop being such a jaded ass hat.” I’ll get to her in a bit. First, the two woman selling drinks at the top.

I was dying of thirst, so I happily paid the premium for a bottled water and a Coke. They were about five times more expensive than what I would have paid down the road, but the people down the road didn’t have to lug coolers all the way up a mountain. I thanked them, downed the Coke, and started to wander around enjoying the serenity of it all. Next thing I know one of the women begins following me around and pointing out the different formations in the rock. “Monkey! Crying Buddha! Crying monkey!” I couldn’t see the resemblance to any of the things she was calling out, nor did care to. A few moments earlier I was enjoying the fact that I had the place to myself, now I was being stalked by an uninvited tour guide. I kept politely nodding with a smile, and moving away from her, but she never left my side, her finger constantly extended, and her lips constantly flapping. I made my way up to a cave off of the main plateau, and that’s when it happened. The hand came out, followed by a “You pay me.” I felt pretty lousy about it, but I didn’t want to encourage this kind of behavior. I told her I would buy another drink when I left (which I did), but I would not give her anything for following me around. She wasn’t too happy, but I now had the cave to myself.

My only company in the cave.




There was also a deeper cave that I regret not getting to, but it was a tight fit, and I was afraid of damaging my camera. I later saw a few pics of the massive cavern on the other side and really regretted not taking the risk. I told myself I wouldn’t let that happen again. I wasn’t here to play it safe after all. I was here for the adventure! I wondered up to the second tallest peak (the tallest was not accessible), got a few pics, then headed down.

With chronic pain in my left ankle, and bulging disks in my back, this was not an easy location to reach. It did wonders for my morale though. Yesterday was becoming a distant memory!


By the time I got to the temple, the place was dirty with tourists. At one point I literally had to hug the side of a wall to make my way down the stairs. If you ever get out this way, get there before 9am. By the time I reached the bottom there were buses everywhere. It was crazy. I made it back to the shop my scooter was parked at. I was relieved to see it was where I left it, but my helmet was missing. I walked into the shop to see if they had it. Sure enough, she had taken it inside. All I had to do to get it back was follow her around the shop while she showed me all the things that my wife would apparently love. Unlike the situation with the woman on top of the mountain, I had accepted this girl’s assistance, so I felt really guilty not buying anything. At the same time I didn’t like anything they had, and even if I had, I didn’t want to transport it around. After about ten minutes of saying no thank you, I gave her the equivalent of about five bucks for allowing me to park there. In hindsight I probably shouldn’t have, but I felt bad. Even after I paid her she looked as though she had been cheated. Her goal was to move product, and I left with nothing.

It was know about ten o’clock and I was starving. I hadn’t eaten since about four thirty the night before. As I was driving to the mountain earlier that morning I saw a small building off the road that had a bunch of what appeared to be local laborers. I’m a big proponent of eating where the towns folk eat so I navigated my way back. When I got there, seven men sat out front playing something that looked a bit like chess, but with round pieces that they flipped over to reveal inscriptions. It was a pretty lively game. It seemed as though after each move some money was changing hands.

The street businesses look pretty much the same in Vietnam. Typically a long rectangular floor plan with an open front, and small room or two in the back. The larger ones with an open loft up top. This one was no different. When I walked in a young woman greeted me in Vietnamese. I felt like I had come to the right place, because she didn’t speak a lick of English. Although I was happy to be in a truly local establishment, communication was a chore.

Since my mid twenties I’ve had the good fortune to travel abroad on a fairly regular basis, even living in the South Pacific, and the Caribbean for a stretch. Every place I had been prior to Vietnam was pretty similar in terms of communicating with body language. You want a drink? Act like you’re taking a drink. You want a hotel? Act like you are laying your head on a pillow. Ultimately you can get pretty far this way. Not so in Vietnam. It seemed like every one of the most common gestures you would think to use were greeted with blank stairs, and complete confusion. Standing in front of this woman trying to convey that I wanted to order something to eat was my first introduction to this contrast.

After using ten different variations of pointing to my mouth, the finally got what I was asking. She instantly started shaking her head. Turns out they didn’t serve any food there. Only beer. What the hell were all those guys doing out in front at 7am? Oh well. As the old saying goes, “There’s a sandwich in every beer.” Who doesn’t like sandwiches?



On the way back I noticed this abandoned hotel. Reminded me of Baja. Beautiful beachfront property and a giant stalled construction project. Love to know the story behind it. On one of the main stairwells there was a ton of dried blood. Someone got hurt pretty badly here. Kind of eerie.





Sun was baking the back of my neck, so I made a b-line back to the hotel. It was raining when I left so I didn’t think to put on sunscreen. Lesson learned. Just before the hotel I saw two women taking pictures of each other, so I pulled over and offered to take one of the two of them. As I was taking the picture I saw my first water buffalo. They were cuter than I expected, and sounded a bit like a human baby cuing at times, and an old man belching at others.



Got some sunscreen from an Australian couple at the hotel, then back into Hoi An proper. Wanted to get some custom tailored suits, but the pricing was far from the legendary bargains I’d heard of. $20 for a tie. $15 if I bought five or more. Better than in the States, but more than I wanted to pay. No thanks. Stole some WiFi from one of the tailors to Skype home. Took some looking but not to hard to find a signal on the street. Finally got some food, then wondered around for a while. Came across an open-air market, and got offered a foot massage. My dogs were barking, so I was all over it. I followed her until we got to the back of the market. I mean the very back. We’re talking behind the curtain back. We literally walked through other people’s stalls to get to her little storefront. The whole place was maybe 9’X15’. The massage was decent. Not quite as deep as I would have liked, but still helped. When she was finished she asked if I wanted a back massage.

Numba one massaaage! You too bookoo!




Fun fact! Of all the massage places I visited, only one had clean sheets. For all I know there could have been one person before me, or fifty. Oh well, when in Rome. After I got over the feel of sand and moisture on the table, I started to worry about it’s stability. Every time I moved I could feel it strain under my weight. I’m guessing it wasn’t built with a two hundred and fifty pound American in mind. I finally got in a position that was somewhat comfortable (did I mention that about a foot and a half of me hung off of it?), and tried to focus on the actual massage. Then, about fifteen minutes in, she stopped. It was only for about a minute, but when she finally started back up, something was off. It felt different. I opened my eyes and looked over my shoulder to see a completely different woman standing over me. The woman I started with was now trimming someone else’s fingernails. Okay, I guess that’s how they do it here. At least she didn’t just boot me out. Not yet at least. Forty minutes into my hour long massage the current masseuse taps me on the shoulder and says, “Make hair.” She motioned forward, and hovering in front of me was an old Vietnamese lady ready for a cut. It was hard to be upset about it. After all, this was the perfect example of an experience you never forget. I couldn’t tell you one thing about all the good massages I’ve had, but I can guaranty that fifty years from know I’ll still be laughing about this one.


Back on the scooter and rode across a bridge to the other side of town. Didn’t see any tourists on this side. There were just a bunch of little homes, dirt roads, and fishing boats.









As I was riding on the backside I heard some one holler “Helloooo”. That’s the go-to opener in the tourist areas. I hollered it back in the same harmonic tone, and heard a roar of laughter. I turned around to see what was what. There were some Vietnamese hipsters on one side of an open-air restaurant, and four guys on the other. The hipsters didn’t seem to appreciate me being there, but the other four guys waved me over. One of them spoke pretty good English. He worked in a hotel so it made sense. The other three didn’t speak a word. They quickly pulled up a plastic red chair (the staple of Vietnamese seating) and invited me to sit with them. They kept offering me rice wine, but I didn’t want to get hammered while I was on the scooter. The kid that spoke English seemed genuinely excited to have me there, but I could tell his friends were feeling left out. I tried to pull them into the conversation, by filtering questions through their friend. A few minutes passed, and we were fast friends. One of the poor guys had a huge zit on the tip of his nose, and his buddies were relentless. I’m sure me being there just encouraged them to dig deeper. Needless to say we all laughed quite a bit. Zit guy, a little less.




They offered me some minced fish concoction on rice crackers, and of course more rice wine. I don’t know what it was, but it was amazing. I ordered a beer, and hung out for another fifteen minutes, watching the sun begin to creep towards the horizon. Once I finished my beer I asked the English speaker to ask the girl serving us for the bill. The whole thing came to just under five bucks. Five minutes away all the drinks and food would have easily cost triple that. I was happy to pay it. They seemed genuinely surprised, and insisted one last time that I have a shot of rice wine before I left. What the hell? We all toasted, threw them back, and I was on my way.
I rolled back into the main part of town at golden hour. It was crowded, but boy was it purty!























Had diner at the same place I had lunch. It was a tourist spot, but good. Can’t remember the name. Tipped a ridiculously low amount by mistake. Didn’t realize I did the math wrong until I bought a bottled water on the way to the hotel. Figured out that I gave the girl around ten cents U.S. I felt horrible! Got lost heading back to the hotel again! Damn medication. No big deal though. Now that I was out of my funk, I just enjoyed the ride. I was still anxious to get back though. I really wanted to get a good night sleep for the festival the following day. That was after all the only reason I came to Hoi An in the first place. As luck would have it, I ended up missing the whole festival. Fortunately the events that kept me from it were infinitely more enjoyable.

Day3 up soon!

Jedum1 screwed with this post 02-15-2012 at 08:08 PM
Jedum1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2012, 05:24 PM   #12
wachs
just passin' through
 
wachs's Avatar
 
Joined: May 2005
Location: Tumalo, Oregon
Oddometer: 4,695
Excellent notes and photos!

Was over there in april 2010, Ho Chi Min City and understand your initial feelings as I was also traveling alone. Glad you hung in there and had about a thousand times more fun than I did!


__________________
Wait till you see what's next!

http://www.altrider.com/product/cate...rch/hemisphere
wachs is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2012, 06:14 PM   #13
Jedum1 OP
Adventurer
 
Jedum1's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2010
Location: Rancho Santa Margarita, Ca
Oddometer: 88
[QUOTE=wachs;17981081]Excellent notes and photos!

Was over there in april 2010, Ho Chi Min City and understand your initial feelings as I was also traveling alone. Glad you hung in there and had about a thousand times more fun than I did!



Thanks for taking the time to read it. Doesn't look like I missed any thing down South. Looks just like every street in Hanoi. Sorry to hear you didn't have a good experience, but it's good to know that I'm not the only guy that has struggled with traveling solo.
Jedum1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2012, 06:47 PM   #14
going south
hero & Zero...
 
going south's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2008
Location: Alaska, Mazatlan. sometimes seattle!
Oddometer: 957
Great pic's... I can see this is getting good, I spent 28 days in Vietnam one year ago, and loved it...

keep it coming...
__________________
going south...

Never Lost! Just Don't know where I am!

"Don't worry about your money, let your money worry about you" Jorge González
going south is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2012, 08:39 PM   #15
Jedum1 OP
Adventurer
 
Jedum1's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2010
Location: Rancho Santa Margarita, Ca
Oddometer: 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by going south View Post
Great pic's... I can see this is getting good, I spent 28 days in Vietnam one year ago, and loved it...

keep it coming...
28 days? That's solid.
Jedum1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Share

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

.
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump


Times are GMT -7.   It's 07:39 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ADVrider 2011-2014