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Published: January 15th 2020
First day with the new group - 8:30am start and only 2hrs travel time! That's better than our current alert shortest trip of 4 hrs and considerably less than the two 11hr trips we've done.
We get to the Mekong Delta, expecting a nice clean river and see the opposite. There's rubbish close to shore, floating along the river and the water looks filthy.
We pick up our local guide Kai - who's s bit flamboyant, struggles with English and rolls his eyes into the back of his head like The Undertaker whenever he speaks.
We get in our boat and head off to one of the Islands. The first place we stop is just a shit tourist gimmick. We try some local fruit, all of which are disgusting except for the Jack Fruit, they have some Vietnamese women sing to us - with a band playing out of time and tune behind them (it was actually a really awkward experience), then go to a Honey Bee place to drink honey and nectar tea.
It was all a bit average really.
We then go to Coconut Island and Kai demonstrates how coconut milk is made. I felt like a bit of a twat as I thought you just opened a coconut and HEY PRESTO! Turns out there a few more steps.
We then got to try some coconut sweets which were really good.
We moved onto another Island and got a canoe up to where we were having dinner. The canoe ride was lovely, dead quiet and peaceful.
We had a decent lunch and Manh decides he needs to teach us how to sit in a hammock. Like, fuck dude, it's pretty straight forward: Throw your ass in and relax.
Then it's off to the "Home Stay." The first thing I notice is how much more developed Vietnam is as a country in comparison to Cambodia. None of the roads are bad. On our way to the accommodation, it's smooth sailing.. or driving, since we were on a bus at that point. That threw you off didn't it.
We get off the bus and walk down a concrete footpath - not some busted up dirt road. The reason I keep referring to it as a "Home Stay" is because we're not staying in someone's house, the place we're staying in is a poor man's resort. There's multiple rooms, a fridge with drinks, working power, beds, WiFi, seating next to the river, individual showers and toilets. It's just, well, quite nice. It's more like a guest house than somewhere people actually live.
To be honest, it was disappointing. "You want to sleep in a hovel like the locals! You're soooo privlaged." Actually I do.
I don't even think I saw a mosquito.
We head back to Saigon the next day, for half a day before getting an overnight train to Hoi An.
I go bar hopping with a few people in the group (unintentionally) including going up the Bitexco Tower (52 levels) which has a heli-pad attached.
The train trip to Hoi An is 16hrs. There's 4 of us in the overnight train room. It's a bit squished and feels a lil like a prison cell. There's nowhere to hang out, so you're confined to your room with members from your group. Some other's have a member of the general public to share with.
That's a fairly boring blog for you. I'm not some source of entertainment! Don't exploit me!
We've got 3 nights in Hoi An, so here's hoping it's a bit more exciting..
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