Blog Day 69 Thur 14th July 2011
After a few hours of tossing & turning we get a couple of hours kip on the bus, We were under the impression that we were going to arrive in Hoi Ann at around 7.30am, this would have been perfect as we would have been able to get into our hotel, which we already had booked, freshen up and have the rest of the day to explore. In reality though we were nowhere near Hoi Ann at 7.30am. In fact we were nowhere near Hue at 7.30am (which is about 2-3hours away Hoi Ann). We're not sure whether the driver had got lost or what had happened. Needless to say we weren't going to be getting to Hoi Ann as early as we thought.
So we are cruising along through a sleepy little village, when out of a side road this mong in a small lorry decides to pull out……..while our bus is half way across his path! It all happened pretty quickly and the damage to the bus was pretty minimal. The lorry however came off 2nd with half his front headlight and bumper now growing out of some poor lady's front hedge. The next 4 hours of our lives were just ridiculous! We were the only English speaking people on the bus and with that, the only people that didn't have a clue what was going on. As it turned out we were stationary in this little town for about an hour whilst crowds gathered to look at the incident. The police then turned up and another hour passed while they stood and looked at the incident. Then we were back on the bus again and on the move, to a nearby 'petrol' station. Here the bus driver was carted off to the police station. We did manage to pry a little information out of one guy who told us that out here when an accident occurs, the wealthier of the two parties involved has to pay up, weather they were at fault or not. In this case it turned out to be the bus driver, who in all fairness wasn't at fault at all, but did have to find 4 million Dong (£120). So we had to sit at this petrol garage for 2 hours waiting to head off again. Finally we are back onboard, with not so much as a raised eyebrow from the driver, and we are on the move again…… to the poxy lunch stop!!
We finally arrive in Hue at 3.30 only to then find out that the bus for Hoi Ann left at 1.30 & we are late regardless of the fact that the bus had an accident. Then they say the Hanoi office hadn't even booked us onto the bus anyway, we will have to get the bus the next day & cancel our hotel booking. Can this day truly get any worse we say!!
After some debating later they agree to pay for a public bus to Danang, what an experience…they drive like maniacs & you're packed into a bus like sardines! 2 hours later around 5 we get off at Danang bus station and then have the tedious task of getting a bus to Hoi Ann from here. Simple enough you might say but when you are a westerner they just see money signs. We find the office & ask about prices as there is a battle-axe of a woman trying to charge us about 80,000 Dong (£2.36), not a lot but when we get told that we should be paying 30,000 Dong (£0.88) we are even more annoyed. There are people pestering us for taxi's left right & center & eyeing Trish up & down, it's not nice at all. To top it all off the taxi drivers are all standing around looking at us and you can see in their faces that they all know we are being conned! We finally get her to 60,000 Dong (£1.77) as the girls in the office won't help us & get onto another public bus. Its infuriating, not because of the money, in theory we are talking a few pounds, but when it's in Dong the money is worth a lot more & its principle. Besides we have already paid for 1 open bus ticket that we should have already been on.
At 7.30 we finally get to Hoi Ann bus stop then have to take 2 motorbike taxis to the hotel. By 8ish we are finally in our hotel room, thankfully the room is gorgeous, the shower is hot & the bed is huge & comfortable. After travelling for more than 24hours with extremely little sleep and being stressed out to the max it doesn't take long to drift off!