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Published: February 11th 2010
Enjoyed fruit salad for breakfast at a Roadside Cafe and were approached by some old men who run tours on their push-bike carts (they pedal away and can fit one or two people in their carriage). They don't have Tuk Tuks in Vietnam; people mainly drive Motorbikes or Push Bikes and we've heard there are about 8million Motorbikes in Ho Chi Minh City alone!
We try not to get involved with street sellers because there are so many of them and we can't help them all - no matter how cheap their items or tours are! However, it's really hard to say no to these old men with the bikes, as the look of disappointment on their faces is intense. Next minute we had a cart each and were being taken to a hotel with a pool. It was quite a relaxing ride and the other drivers seem to respect these old men and keep out of their way. I probably felt safer in one of these carts than I do on the back of a Motorbike.
In Vietnam they use both US Dollars and their local currency called Dong, and the first hotel we went to charge $15 to use
the pool. There was no way we were paying that much as it would eat up the majority of our day’s budget. The most we've paid in other countries has been $6.
We wandered to the next big hotel we could find, but that place wanted $23! Are they having a laugh?!
We were worn out from walking so far in the sun and every time we tried to cross a road, we'd nearly get hit by numerous Motorbikes, so we dived in an Internet cafe for some chilled time. I found a hotel advertising Pool use for $7, so after a great lunch in a place called Bobby Brewers Coffee, we headed off to The Majestic. The hotel reception told us to pay one of the pool waiters, but no one bothered us all day. Bonus!
Spent a lazy day reading in the sun then went home for a shower at 5.30 and were out by 7pm. We had dinner in a buzzing corner restaurant called Santa Cafe. It was heaving and you had to fight for a table. A tall Australian man on the next table had drank far too much and was swearing and causing a scene.
He was vile… (the kind of man you wouldn't trust around Farmyard Animals), and was making all kinds of moronic remarks.
Spotted Amy from Croydon (one half of The Purple Couple that we'd met yesterday) and joined her on their table. The four of us watched in horror as the Australian plonker mounted his Motorbike and wobbled off, swerving and causing distress to everyone else on the road. In fact he made one of the old Push-bike guys to brake in the middle of the road and get hit by a taxi. Luckily he was able to fix his back tyre and seemed to ride off as though this kind of thing happens all the time.
Had a few more drinks with Amy and Samile in Go2 and arranged to meet again the following night. On the way home we stopped so El could get a Tofu burger and I had a pancake with lemon and sugar. Yum!
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