Published: August 6th 2010August 6th 2010
Happily on the Road
We are happy to be riding
Well we did it. We finally got moving and it is great. We seem to have fixed Chuck's bike. We have been doing better now that we are doing most of the work ourselves. The mechanics in Vietnam are like the ones back home. They fix one thing and then the next day something else breaks.
We left Hanoi for the last time four days ago. We had one bad break down along the way that we could not fix and it turned out to be a really lucky place to break down. I towed Chuck's bike about 400 meters to the first bit of cover we could find as it was raining. It turned out the guy had a minsk out back and he let us strip his bike of any parts that we needed. Quite funny actually. If some foreigners broke down outside my house in a jeep and wanted to take the carberater and gas valve off my jeep to fix theirs I am quite sure I would not do it.
We did not make it as far as we wanted that day because of the break down so we wound up staying in a little
A good photo op
town in the middle of nowhere called Cam Thuy. Just a dot on the map with one hotel in the whole town and no internet. Quite peaceful actually after leaving Hanoi.
We went for a walk that night to find some food and in following of the traveling tradition we found a crowded restaurant where all the local were eating and had a seat. All of the Vietnamese in the restaurant wanted to drink with us. So we left there with quite a good buzz. On the bad side, their was no menu and the lady just brought us some plates of food. It was what everybody else was eating so we just dug right in. After we finished the first two plates of mystery meat (we decided that one was duck and the other maybe beef), I went up to the food counter to see if anything looked good and I saw a bunch of stewed dog's paws. I am sure that my face paled at that moment. I slunk back to our table to inform Chuck that al I saw was dog cooked in a few different ways. He looked at me with quite a serious face.
Not in Florida anymore
We don't see views like this very often back home
We kind of figured that their would not be dog served in this restaurant as there were two puppies walking around. Just to confirm our worst fears, I called the lady over and pointed at the dog, then at our plate. She just happily nodded her head. It seems as if I have finally eaten the one thing that I never wanted to eat. And as if god was getting me back for eating the dog, I have had terrible diarrhea for the last four days. I can only imagine Ikelos running up to me when I get home, sniffing me, and then turning and running away. Needless to say, we went out and got completely drunk after that in the hopes of forgetting what just happened.
We woke up early the next morning and got back on the road. Our goal was to reach the border town of Na Meow. A small town on the Vietnamese side of the Vietnam - Laos border. The scenery along he ride was beautiful. We just kept climbing higher and higher into the mountains. The weather was nice for most of the day. Unfortunately as we were still a bit unsure
Striping his bike
It was a driving and working Minsk before we arrived
about the condition of Chuck's bike we missed out on many photo ops since we did not want to stop. Sometimes when we stop we don't go again. We have gained confidence in Chuck's bike since then as we wound up riding almost 200km that day on steep mountain roads. If that didn't break Chuck's bike hopefully not much else will.
As we arrived at Na Meow we drove the main drag looking for a hotel. We passed one and figured we would look at one or two more before deciding where we wanted to stay. Quite suddenly we came up to the border. We had not really meant to cross the border that night but we figured since we were here we would see what it was all about. Not much english there, so instead of getting info we would up getting stamped out of Vietnam. Not much else to do now other than cross into Laos as once we are stamped out of Vietnam we could not cross back in. We drove about 100 meters to the Laos side of the border where we were processed and they asked for a $2 overtime fee as it was
Helping us install the parts we just stripped from his bike
after 5:00 and the border was closed. We had expected to pay more than that to bring the motorcyles across so we were happy to pay. We asked about the closest guest house down the road as it was getting dark and we have no desire to drive at night through steep winding mountain roads.
We were told the closest town was 65Km away....
There are more photos below