Friday, July 07, 2006

I thought Hong Kong was hot...

I'm sitting in an open-to-the-air travel agent type office which is attached to a small restaurant which is on the bottom floor of my hostel. This hostel is narrow and tall with a windy staircase leading up to the very few rooms. I'm in room 2 and it's air conditioned - thank god.

D'Arcy and I had a great time dodging kamikaze moto drivers through the streets of the old city. My mom is still in Bangkok, all by her lonesome. Why is she all alone, you ask?

We thought we were all set with her Vietnam visa, having dropped it off on Tuesday to be processed in two days and picked up on Thursday evening in time for her Friday morning flight. Our Friday morning flight. We skipped into the travel agent's office to get the visa last night and disaster struck. Loas visa, right? My mom fumbled for her receipt: Laos Visa. So the girl at the disk misheard and my mom never read her receipt and it was all a sad, sad shame. Thousands of baht later my mom is scheduled to arrive in Hanoi tomorrow night. She'll have only one full day in Hanoi and then she'll be on her way home.

Maybe that's for the better. Hanoi is HOT. So damn hot. And it's also a jaywalker's (AKA D'Arcy's) paradise. For those of us who like to obey traffic lights and rules (AKA me) it's rather frightening. Exhilerating perhaps, but frightening.

The countryside from the airport to the city is lush and green with rice paddies, small and lovely communities, and people who really wear those wide-brimmed, pointed hats. I thought it was all a lie. On the way we learned Vietnamese from a friendly couple sharing our airport minibus and exclaimed at the various sights along the way including a gaggle of geese, a horse and cow, and stall after stall of sunglasses vendors.

The hostel seems nice which a little bit of charm (hopefully better than D & D which actually turned out to be okay), and friendly staff. Things are going well.

To those who have emailed and haven't received a proper response, I'm sorry! I've been almost liberated of my internet addiction just when people at home need to contact me.

Hey, this just in: internet is free for guests!!! Internet addiction re-instated!!!

Tonight we're heading out to a bar recommended by Lonely Planet. Hopefully it's still in existence.

Peace out, kids.

3 Comments:

At July 07, 2006 2:23 PM , Blogger Kiran said...

laos visa available at the airport....at least at luang prabang, and at the nong khai friendship bridge...

oh yeah...and lonely planets...if you want them, you can get them for a couple of bucks for new ones (fake though but good copies) in phnom penh...

 
At July 07, 2006 11:35 PM , Blogger Tony Lawless said...

If you get down to Ho Chi Minh City, you will see a stark contrast...

Hanoi's okay, but.

 
At July 08, 2006 8:50 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I find it best to just get behind a local when crossing the street. They seem to know what they're doing even if i'm flabbergasted at the crazy driving.

Samui's weather isn't that hot, but i'm still sweating like a pig here. I really like SE Asia, but in the long run, i know there's no way i could deal with the weather. In bangkok in April it's easily 35-40C with 100%humidity. Lord knows how my friend deals with it, but he seems to like it a lot.

--Dan

 

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