Category Archives: Vietnam



I am sitting on a train after my last adventure in Vietnam. Tomorrow I fly out to Kuala Lumpur. It’s been an adventure, for sure and I apologize for my failure to update. If I have to work on it, then I won’t write this entry, so I shall just go with stream of
My computer can barely fit on my lap, an extension cord is draped across the back of the seat ahead of me. The extension cord has come in handy since I bought it in Krabi, Thailand. Not only does it give me extended reach as outlets that are located inconveniently in the most improbable of places it functions as a ground adapter as I have not found a grounded outlet yet.
My overstuffed backpack sits next to the window, I have an aisle seat and the window seat is occupied, the occupant graciously offered me to put the pack there.
I am a day late getting back to Hanoi. There is a girl there waiting for me. I have never met her but know her througb a mutual acquaintance. I have been talking with her nearly every day for the the last two months, SMS messages, google+ messages, emails and phone calls. Most of it was just a way to kill time for one of us or the other. Sometimes I calledher and asked her to translate things for me. I offered to buy her dinner before I leave the country. She showed up in Hanoi yesterday and wasdistraught that I wasn’t there. Why? She was spending Valentines day alone. Hmm.
Damage report. My new phone, I bought bu a month ago has incurred somedamage to the case due to the inadequate protection, it fell off a table in my hotel room. I am on my way back from Nimh Bin. On the way out I discovered my kindle screen was cracked. The thing was so light that it was in a pocket in my vest in my backpack. When these things are placed
on buses, they are not handled gently, to say the least. 
My compact camera LCD is cracked. That happened on the train ride out there, it was in a case on my belt, the screen was out towards the spare batteries, I was in a sleeper bed on a train, rolled on my side and that was it. That works out to about a dollar a picture taken. It has an extended accident warranty for five years which is only honored in the US. I could probably find a traveler to take it back but as I am always on the move, I have no address to have it returned, so somebody stateside is going to get a very nice camera.
My last two days I did some light walking, no more than eight miles a day, boated down rivers, under and through karst formations, and generally saw the beautiful country side outside Nimh Binh. It was very cold there. No buildings are heated, I slept, fully dressed under two comforters. I was in Nimh Bin for but a few days, having made my way from Sapa.
How is this working the trip backwards working for you? The trip fromSapa to Nimh Binh was by way of Hanoi, where I was also supposed to the girl I am going to meet tonight, but I told her I didn’t much like Hanoi and I just blew through, arriving at four in the morning and disregarding all the motorbike and taxi drivers who told me that there was no train to Nimh Binh so they should take me to a hotel. I had a few cups of coffee, went back to the station and inquired. Yes, there was the station for Nimh Binh the next train left at 6:30. Sorry girl, I am outta here.
Sapa was gorgeous. The day I arrived I got to my room on the fourth floor of Sapa Paradise View and looked at the mountains in the distance and over the top of clouds that shrouded the valley. I just explored the town and the surrounding area on foot constantly encountering Mungh women the conversations went like this with little variance
Hello, where you from?”
Canada?” or some other country
Where you live?” (What hotel am I staying at?)
I would just shrug, what the hell difference does it make and why should I tell them anyway?
“You want to come to my village?” (Would you like to pay to trek with me to my village?)
Do you want to buy …” (Something one of their relatives sewed at home.


The town is hotels, restaurants and outfitter stores with really high quality knockoffs.