heya all, so i arrived safely last night at about 5pm Hanoi time, found my luggage fine but it was more hassle trying to find a taxi to take me to the hostel im staying at...oh well, i guess sign language will do when no one understands me! lol. the taxi drive was loong...after about 30mins i decided to attempt to ask him how much longer and he just said 'sorry i no understand' but i just thought if u can say i no understand then why cant he say english numbers?! hehe. neway i just sat in silence after that and about 45 mins later we got there! Its absolutely crazy the driving here, thought i was gonna die in a crash a million times on the way here! no one gets out of ur way and there are mopeds EVERYWHERE, quite hard to explain u just have to see it to understand, quite surreal. it means everyone honks their horns to let them know theyre there but no one listens. people just cross the road randomly and no one stops for anyone. ive been close to death a few times...close ur eyes and run across the road - thats my method now! :) its safe i promise! neway got a shower in after the loong flights and then went for some oriental soup for dinner. went for a wander through the town, its v humid but not at all sunny, just misty! so no tan for mel! hehe. walked around a v pretty lake alst night, was v cool all lit up, the pics dont do it justice. there were still tonnes of people walking out and about at 10pm, but decided to retire to the room then, but couldnt actually sleep much at all coz of the constant horns going...they probably died down for abouit an hour between 3am to 4am and then its just constant noise! i decided to just get up this morn and people watch out of the window until it was time for breakfast! theres so much to see, its a world away from anything ive seen before. i will upload the piccys tonight, going to go into the town and find a bank to change some dollars into vietnamese dong so we can actually buy some things. hope u are all ok, miss you, lots of love melly xxxx
hey guys, so i havent written for a while, think the last time was on saturday, went to the night market saturday night in Hanoi which was huge with loads of interesting smells and stalls and icky foods being sold! hehe. v cheap things but no room in my backpack for it all! hehe. had some vietnamese munch on the way back and then got some kip in before the other guys on the proj arrived on sunday. they are all really cool and we spent most of sunday getting to know eahc other and looking round the Ol Quarter of Hanoi. Had a few laughs trying to haggle for things in the shops, one shop we tried on tonnes of baggy fisherman pants and although totally unflattering, felt we had to buy a pair coz of all the time and effort she'd put in letting us try them all on! oh well they were about 50p! haha. went out to the local jazz bar for some Hanoi Bai Hoi (local beer for 30p!!) in the eve. we took a look round the Temple of Literature on monday and saw a typical musciain band play with weird instruments! the temple was v oriental and so pretty to walk around, v peaceful. took tonnes of piccys, but we were all laughing at how the pics dont do the temple justice, they just look like the inside of our local all u can eat chinese! lol. joking. ive had to upload the piccys (afew good ones coz the PCs arte so slow here) onto my facebook site coz this site wont load as qwuickly :( hopefully u can see them thrtu my profile on Facebook. anyway, we saw lots of statues and buddhas and pagodas on monday theni went with some peeps to get an icecream sundae from fannys...the lonely planet said its the best parlour in hanoi so it had to be tried...that night after typical vietnamese diunner- rice and noodles(yep u guessed it) a few of us went to green mango a cockatil bar n then to funky monekys for a dance! was good fun and came back to eat all of shauns rations..english food mmm lol. so now we wont have any haribo left for the whole month! vietnamese ppl dont seem to crave pic n mix and chocolate quite as much as us english! lol
anway tues morn was spent on a 5 hr tiring bus journey...numb bum! we stopped in Viet Tri for lunch - it was So disgusting, and esp on a travel sick tummy. urgh. and the toilet wasnt much to be desired. lol. hold ur nose and crouch...my thigh muscles are getting butch LOL. jokes. anyway a few magazines later we arrived in Yen Bai, a town not even in the lonely planet guide so we get tonnes more stares - i feel like a freak show, literally they dont care about making it obvious that theyre staring. they love white skin and think its beautiful. all their creams for girls have whitening in them to make their skin whiter...just like we want fake tan they risk skin cancer like we do...grass is always greener it seems. weird.
weve had a few vietnamese language lessons and cooking lessons so far and wandered around Yen Bai, osted some postacards but theyll take a month to get to you if they even arrive! the hostel here made me homesick last night..the water is yellow and green so u cant shower or clean ur teeth in it ewww so im babywiping my armpits and plastering the deodorant on til i get to a shower next week...mmm nice! smelly mel! well they said we'd be roughing it! lol. the bed is hard as a rock and i just cover myself up like a caccon in the mosi net to stop getting bitten. we had quite a laugh about it last night trying to get into bed! we went to a bar in a shack last night for a few Hanoi beers - 6 beers and 3 rice wines cost us 1 pound...crazy!we sat there in the shack till the rain poared in thru the gaps and then legged it back to the hostel...lol. its been raingin since we got to Yen Bai, really pooey really, havent seen the sun yet? so im sat here in this internet cafe in my raincoat. oh well cant have everything, hopefully ill get a tan in thaiand! hehe. neways im off to get my dinner now, guess what it is...rice and erm dont ask what the meat is! lol. im getting quite good at the whole chopstick thing...although it does take twice as long to eat anything! haha. neway i will update this when i get thechance again, missing you all tonnes :( send me lots of emails and i hope you're all ok. love melly xxx