The arrival in Hue was welcome change from Danang and it was clear from the outset that we would be having more fun and better food here. We found a small bar the DMZ that we used as base camp for the next few days that was always busy with backpackers. It served great food and meant that our newly rented room was only a stones throw from cold beverages. The standard of living in Vietnam has outweighed all expectation as for the princely sum of six U.S dollars it is possible to rent a place with air-con, t.v, fridge, and hot water. For the same price in Cambodia we rented a box with broken fan and cockroaches. Where it excels in home comforts Vietnam lacks in quality of food, meaning if we found a good place to eat it would be more than likely to get our custom everyday. This being said we had some of our best meals here including 'free' pizza that some people had left behind and a plucky aussie dave ceased the opportunity for us all to share the wealth. It was still hot and they said we could have it, but we all felt a
bit pikey having eaten from someone else's plate. Culinary excellence was also experienced at a restaurant run by a guy that since birth has been deaf and mute. All the staff were some of the best we have come across including a bloke who was 37 but looked 10, there wasn't anything wrong with him, he simply got to a certain height and just stopped growing. Everyone who eats at the place gets a free homemade bottle opener and the owner proudly parades his skill for bottle opening and, we are told, his record is 5 at once. I've beat this record but it was in the cellar at work, and my boss was most definately not impressed.
The days in Hue were spent idly walking around the town and visiting the local market where the girls brought kimonos. The women working on the stall were naturally distracted by the two Daves and wanted to know how many girlfriends we had. Naturally we lied but were forced to confess our faithfulness when Lucy and Kerry got wind of our boasting. After my refusal to buy some poorly made t-shirts we were described as 'handsome but difficult' and the girls
tended to agree.
We took a cheap boat trip along the Perfume River and got a glance at the real Vietnam. We were taken through floating villages and witnessed lots of communities living in house boats. This was the most picturesque time we have spent here and offered the opportunity to take some brilliant photos, and meet the happiest farmer we've ever come across. Along the way there was the opportunity to visit some temples but as the entrance fee was a bit steep and we were running out of money we opted for the cheap approach and explored on foot, stumbling across tiny jungle villages.
The last day in hue was spent on the motorbikes and we got to properly explore the town. Lucy was feeling a bit rough from the previous nights activities as today would be the last time we would see Kerry and Dave before they went to Hanoi and we went into Laos. A person short we headed off and yet again experienced the non existent Vietnamese highway code. In the afternoon we picked up a now showered and fed Lucy and gave her a lesson in basic motorbike handling. Things started well
until she realised although changing up gear was no problem, the failure to change down impeeded on her driving prowesque. We saw off our Australian friends the same evening, and prepared to leave for our forth country the next day.
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