Monday, 24 January 2011

2 July 2001

Moscow airport is very big and very dark with bizzare 70's decor. After considering a large bottle of vodka with 6 shot glasses (not my idea I hate vodka) we settled for Carlsberg in the bar. On the second flight I got an aisle seat and was able to sleep but the meal was vile.

Hanoi airport seemed small and quicker to get through that I expected then we were met by someone from the Vietnam office of Frontiet and loaded onto another bus. It was very hot and humid.

There are no road rules in Vietnam, where a dua lcarriageway forced it we drove on the rightbut elsewhere anything goes especially for the bikes and mopeds. We passed rice fields, water buffalo, farmers in conical hats - all the stereotypes. Then Hanoi - a mess of people with shops spilling onto the street, run down buildings and noise. After dumping bags at a cheap hotel we went to the local bar (bia hoi).

Ate at Minh's restaurant, an upstairs place with an open terrace and plastic chairs. The beef and fried noodles was delicious. Then on to Highway 4 a xeo (sp?) bar where you sit on the floor at low tables and are bought shots of rice wine, which is not a wine but a very strong spirit, in a range of colours. It seemed strange to think that the bare fan cooled room was probably the closest to top range I would get on this trip.

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