Not the only one in the Tam Coc ricefields

Not the only one in the Tam Coc ricefields
Ninh Binh, Vietnam

Ninh Binh, Vietnam

Limestone cliff

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.

Tall limestone cliffs poke out of the rice fields
Cycle. Stop. Photo. Cycle. Stop. Photo.

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.

Wide wet rice field overlooked by distant limestone rocks
Rice fields.

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.

Sun set over paddy
Sun set over paddy.
My bike, leaning against ornate carvings on a stone bridge
Ma bike.

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