Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Present and accounted for

Greetings from Vietnam. Sorry to be in Radio Silence mode for the past few days, but the local government does not allow access to blog sites from the net; they are blocked. Thanks to our trusty friend Kaj, however, I think we can circumvent this small hiccup. I will give the brief overview for now, but want to come back later to get more into the details of the adventure.

Landed in Saigon on Thursday night and stayed for one night. It is a sprawling city; I'll be back there in a few days to see more. Friday morning, I flew to Hanoi; flying is still a bit of an event for the locals, so everyone was well dressed, behaved, etc. A relief from a flight in the states. Everyone's face was pressed up against a window...sometimes two faces were pressed up against a window. Landed in Hanoi two hours later and met up with Bionica, looking tanned, rested and acting like a savvy local. Except for the 6ft tall thing. Bus to Hanoi, while only 25km from the airport, takes an hour. Why so slow? Because roads here are the worst driver's ed nightmare you could imagine. Bicycles, motos (scooters), cyclos, livestock, dogs, cars, trucks, buses, pedestrians; you name it and they are all vying for a piece of the road. The two lanes aren't really directional...whoever is bigger gets to use it to go any which way. And guess what, it works!

The rest of Friday and Saturday was for seeing Hanoi. Expect a post on this one to come. Sunday was spent going to Halong Bay for a 3 day boat trip through the islands. Trekking, paddling, riding a moto, etc. Amazing; expect a post here too (in the meantime, google "halong bay" in the image section for a sneak peak. Now back in Hanoi...leave tonight to take an overnight train to Sapa, near China, to trek for a few days. Wish us luck...

Vietnam is both what I expected, and not what I expected. More later. It is easy to get around, easy to find what you need, etc. Hanoi is a nice city...quite clean. And the people here are very genuine...especially once you get out of the city. I continue to be in awe of how willing everyone is to help. And no, there are no strings attached.

More posts, pics, and videos to come.

Oh, to Ted's comments: 1.) it does taste different, and 2.) because she's cuter than you in a "she doesn't need to shave" kind of way.



Anonymous said...

Good that you are both alive and well. we were getting worried that you had both come down with some sort of mosquito borne disease that incapacitates your typing capabilities.

Ok, i guessed #16 would taste "different". how about better or worse? In the kind of detail that Skippy appreciates while he is eating.

Skippy and Paella have stopped shaving and are now plucking, to see if they can lure you back.

Can't wait to see the pics of the cruise and the trek. Safe travels!