Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Nha Trang

Umm, why are we stopping the bus. Aaah, because we are about to drive through a lake, which no doubt was once a road. So after bumbling up and down the narrow bus to drag my trusty backpack to my seat at the back of the bus (all the cool kids sit up the back!). At least I had the foresight to put on the raincover. Unfortunately for me, the rain cover managed to do little more than collect the water on the inside to ensure a soaking wet bag. Hmmm, I'll find out later how much stuff is ruined.

Anyway wet bags inside the bus (now why didn't we do that before driving through the other big puddles??) and onwards through the lake. A quick view out the window confirmed my suspicion that I am driving through the sea. A more worrying sight upahead is a torrent of water rushing along beside the road. There lies a half overturned truck, and the remnants of a shack(or house?). We drive on creating waves leaving motorbikes struggling in our wake. On past a small boat, picking people up. Apparently the rains end in November in Viet Nam, unfortunately nobody told the rain gods this year.

Finally we make it! Hurrah, found once of the best value hotels in my travels, only 5$ for a really good room, with cable TV, fridge, bath and no big insects. But the rain continued. I was on the last bus in for the next few days. Not exactly ideal sight seeing weather. The beach was pretty trashed, I'd seen pictures and it looked quite nice. But now it was just covered in crap, mostly driftwood, which was slowly been scavenged off by locals packing it on the back of their ubiquitous motorbikes.

One day (okay part of the day) it did stop raining and after being cooped up I set off for a long walk in this direction (points finger randomly). It's always interesting getting out the centre of the tourist hotspots, as people reactions are quite different. After walking for an hour I stopped off at a small cafe, trying to decided whether the people were suprised, happy or horrified at the sight of a strange foreign guy. I got some pumpkin soup, leafy greens, pork rice, beansprouts, noodles & tea. All for less than a dollar (Although thats still FIFTEEN THOUSAND dong!)

I continued my wandering along, ended up getting stuck in a cul-de-sac. One kid, glanced up at me and looked terrified, like he was about to burst into tears. Memo to self, have a shave. After getting completely and utterly lost I just jumped on a motorbike and get driven home. Nice and easy! Although most motorbike taxi drivers are annoying still thankful when you have no idea where you are.

So after sitting out the rain in Nha Trang it was back on with the road show. Well until the night bus to Hoi An turned round after an hour and came back. Yipee! Try again next night. Obviously a lot of people were unhappy at this turn of events. However I later heard that the night bus the previous day has been stuck for 42 hours, hehe. Not so bad then. Basically the road had subsided down 5m for about 20m in length. The bus had to wait until the road fixers came and sorted it out.

The next day I made it smoothly to Hoi An. The tailor capital of Viet Nam, suit you Sir!

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