Tuesday, September 19, 2006

KP's Birthday Hoi An style

Someone told me today that the best thing about traveling by yourself is the fact you are never really alone and they are 100% right. Since my trip begun I have made so many friends that there has never been a dull moment.

I arrived in Hue some time ago (funny how the days now merge into one) and was delighted to be given the name of a hotel that the Irish girls had scouted the day before.

The hotel was down a little alley in down town backpacker’s ville. The room was particularly nice and even had a bath tub and HBO movies all for the bargain price of 6USD.<br>
After arriving late and desperate for something to eat I wandered all of 10 meters before bumping into two German guys from Cologne I had met a week earlier, quick to exchange the last weeks adventures I informed them of the highway robbery and showed them a picture of the guy. At once I noticed their faces change, part alarmed and another part surprised they looked at the photo and in unison exclaimed ‘that's the guy who approached us’ what a small town Hanoi was proving to be.

The following morning I planned to go on my own little adventure tour but given the nauseating heat, my inability to even work out which direction to walk I only managed to find a fairly large market that smelt like every bad smell I have ever smelt before merged together, silently I wished that I had not gotten rid of my cold and that my nose was still blocked.

On arrival back at the cafe across from my hotel, I remembered a friends wise advice and booked a motorcycle tour around the city. The ride was amazing and safe because it was pre booked with a tour company. Minh my driver was fantastic, ducking and weaving out of the endless traffic like a pro.

We went and visited some pagoda's, temple's and war trenches and before long my 5 hours were up. That night, I joined up with the Germans and we went to a night club named 'Brown Eyes' where I met a guy I nicknamed the beaver, given his penchant for carrying around a soft beaver toy around the South East Asia and photographing it in various costumes and in the arms of a variety of pretty girls.

The music was terrible- Asian techno is a sound better heard than explained but soon I was on my feet and dancing to the music like no one was watching me.

Safe in the custody of the Germans (both martial arts enthusiasts- we decided to get a cyclo home) and giggled all the way to slumber.

The next morning I departed Hue for a delightful 4 hour mini bus trip to Hoi Ann. The road was horrible at times air borne in my seat I felt the previous nights drinks reach the back of my throat a few times and I was sure there was a gymnast in my tummy doing somersaults.

Hoi An is beautiful I booked into a plush hotel (10USD) and ate dinner quickly and prepared for a quiet night to save my energy for my big birthday party the following day.

I awoke on my birthday to the delightful song of my 2 1/2 year old god daughter singing me happy birthday and the day only got better.

Hoi An is any girls heaven, they have shops there that tailor make cloths by request. I was fortunate enough to gea couple of dresses made (for fun) and 4 new suits (for not so fun). Hoi An is also a foodies favorite; it is filled with gourmet restaurants and I was lucky enough to have dinner at Cafe de Amis, a great find, where Mr. Kim the owner treats you to a delicious Vietnamese 5 course dinner for 4USD.

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