Dan and Lu's Travels
Felt a bit dodgy this morning. The Israeli guys were rude to us at breakfast, they are like old men!! (But only in their 20s) They taught us backgammon last night which was cool but they would have been quite happy playing it all night and not talking to anyone. They said we were all partying until late and they didn'ty get any sleep... ooops... After breakfast we checked into a hotel and had half an hour before getting on to a minibus (us and the french and few others). We drove for 20 minutes then our guide took us into Cat Ba National Park. I saw the mountain in front of us but didn't think for a moment we would be climbing it....... I was wrong. Jeez. I thought I was going to have a heart attack! After a while ( no idea about the time as I was trying to breathe) we stopped, then again before we reached a place that was near the top. Out guide said we could go to the top and take pictures or not. I chose not, Dan went off with the camera. The guide stayed with me for 5 minutes and gave me a head and back massage. Which was quite surreal as I was however many feet up a mountain, but amazing and I felt better immediately. He then left to go to the top and I sat on my own. The view was fabulous and the only sound I could hear was the odd squaking bird. Defintely not something you experience every day and I'm glad I didn't go to the top as I would have been with 8 other people. We then began the descent (hooray!), which was more up and down and across rather than just down. Came across a hill farmer herding goats down the mountain. Had lunch (yet more rice and cabbage!) then had a rest before getting on a boat which sailed for 20 minutes into the heart of Halong Bay where we got into kayacks. (honestly I did this!) It was fab. Dan and I paddled around one rock, which sounds like nothing but took two hours to get round, it was huge. So serene. The water is green and very still. In 2 hours we only saw two other boats. Very quiet and peaceful, it was nice to stop paddling every so often and float and look at the scenery. Had dinner at the same place we'd had lunch - the French were starting to get rude about the food... Went out with the French guys and played some pool. I've never seen 4 blokes who were so bad at pool! Wasn't going to play as I seem to have all ability to see angles/hit balls since I've been away but thought I may as well. I lost but it took two of them to beat me! We then followed the music and went to a club. The only club on the island and it was full of locals. Kind of like Visage but in a vast open ended warehouse. The dj was playing hard hard house music and loads of people were stood in a circle dancing while every so often a guy would enter the middle of the circle and breakdance! It was cool to watch, though none of us had ever seen breakdancing to anything other than hip hop music. We were all confused but entertained. Stayed a while then Dan and I went to a bar near the hotel where the bar maid put on Cafe del Mar as we were English...!