Finally I have figured out what the strange vietnamese script at the top of my blog means and how to get into my blog! We had have a fantastic few days chasing moonshadows in Halong bay and world hertiage site of spectacular natural beauty which the vietnamese have done a remarkable job of saving.
We had a couple of hectic days in Hanoi finished the Voyager Jules Verne part of our trip and had to work out this part. While the organised Jules Verne part was interesting I think it will be fair to say that neither Clive nor I are the kind of people who like to be that organised. We did see a lot of the heritage sites in Vietnam but definately spent far too much time in buses and being organised by guides that could only just speak english.
Hanoi itself while a beautiful city with lakes and french boulevards has a chaotic mess of traffic. We spent an afternoon walking around the old city and truly felt sick from the intensity of the fumes. Many locals wear masks and I know why. Crossing the road is definately an extreme sport, extra hazordous with 91 year old theo who is extremely resistant to accepting a helpful arm. So inspite of the cornocopia of shopping delights we were glad to hop on a Handspan Tour bus out of the city to Halong Bay. We did find a fantastic jazz bar in Hanoi but definately decided that big Asian cities are not our thing and thought how lucky we are to live in the pristine Rocky Mountains.
We arrived at the boat terminal to throngs of tourists, guides and very smelly exhaust from the bsuy harbour. Soon we were ensconched on a fast boat that took us to our junk our home for at least 18 hours. Sitting on top, observing the sparking sea and Karst shaped islands like a fabled atlantic the stress of travelling in SE Asia dropped away and for the first time on the trip I felt relaxed. We cruised off through the bay of islands of fantastial shapes munching on delicous fresh prawns, squid and fish. An added plus we did not have to worry about taking Granpa tottering down any steps or being run over by an army of motorbikes! I have to say for 91 he has a very healthy appetite and enjoys pudding and coffee every night.
The following day we truly enjoyed getting onto Kayaks while granpa stayed on the support boat. It was very peaceful and idyllic.
Now we are spending a few days in a fabulous Sunrise resort toping up on Vitamin D and rest before heading back to Hanoi on Saturday. Theo returns to Edinburgh on Monday and we start our biking trip.
I have learned much more about vietnam's horrific history in the last fifty years. How amazingly resisilent the populations is.
Oh well lunch time.
The sun is shining, the sea is warm and the birds sing as the multitude of butterflies dance around the flowers. What more could I want?