Ninh Binh, Vietnam
I thought I was. Not as if I was massively late last night, here around 10 after a short but slightly hairy ride on the back of a moped. I had a couple of beers in the garden and didn’t have a soul, but there was an American couple at breakfast. And this evening, locals in the dorm with me and a couple of bungalows full.
I’ll get used to the company. Toured the rice fields, via a short run in the morning, a longer two-loop bike ride and a longer run in the dusk. All of which made me realise that although it is beautiful here, I have pretty much explored it all, so am happy to leave tomorrow. Apparently, the only train or bus option is the same as I came in on, but remembering the lengthy advice I got from friend of colleague of Dad’s (something about “all liars. Lovely. But lying) I checked. There are trains in the day, and I’m booked on one. Lovely. Feel a bit like I’ve stepped off the set tourist menu, having skipped the Halong bay and Sapa hill forest station options, and am doing my own thing.
Today – rice fields everywhere, limestone formations “like Halong Bay but without the sea), a distinct absence of noise (except when I considered cycling into Ninh Binh itself, the local city-and gave it a miss once I got close to the main road) and no bell ends wandering into the dorm chatting after midnight. Yes, it’s nice that you’ve found friends and have a little group. Now shut up. Er, I thought, back in Hanoi. Not any more. Immediately relaxed when I got here, I have unclenched and gone my own way.