This was well and truly an experience I will not be forgetting for a while. We arrived at the bus stop via a mini van but the bus didn’t leave for ages so we had to wait which was fine. We got on and its more reclining seats than actual beds but thats okay we got settled in and both started reading our books! I started listening to some music and tried to sleep for a bit but wasn’t really that tired so got the book back on. Joe suggested that on the floor there were mattresses and the bus didn’t seem to be full so maybe we should sleep down there.
We moved downstairs and started watching some pre-recorded stuff on the laptop to try and help us sleep. Eventually I think I must have just fallen asleep when there was an almighty BANG. Everyone was suddenly awake. Turns out the bus was a bit broken and they were jacking it up to try and change the hell at the side of the road. Interesting. Anyway we carried on and I fell back asleep until BANG. Not again I thought but yes same problem something not quite right with a wheel. Eventually the driver and his mate appeared satisfied that the wheels on the bus were all in working order and off we went again. Phew everyone seemed relieved we had a lot of toilet breaks as well but I didn’t leave my seat. In the middle of the night it started to pour down with rain we hit a really heavy monsoon. And much to my horror Joe discovered that it was raining on the inside of the bus as well as none of the windows had be sealed properly. the drivers friend ushered everyone down the front of the bus and we had to cram into the empty beds there but we all still got pretty wet. Oh well! Woke up and we were at the Laos border. It was slight chaos, young local lads running around all over the place but they seemed to sort us brits out pretty quickly. Half of our bus had decided that they had to walk to Vietnam now and off they went (idiots) Joe and I got back on the bus and waited for them to return. The Vietnamese border was pretty similar organised chaos!
Right only 7ish more hours on this bus, lets go. No wait get your bags… new bus now and a new driver. This driver was the most annoying man I have ever encountered. At the time I thought it was just him but turns out this is the done thing in Vietnam are you ready for this… he drove right up behind every passing vehicle and then beeped the horn. I counted one minute and he beeped 38 times!!! This went on for the whole bus journey we were ready to strangle him. I must at this point mention that the last time I ate was now yesterday lunch time i’ve hardly had any sleep we left our water on the previous bus and have no money in this currency. So the next 6/7 hours were long. We eventually pulled up at a scrap yard thinking this can surely not be it! We were then put into taxis and had to pay for the last 10k. It wasn’t too much of a cheek really, it seems to be the norm around here and the whole bus had cost us about £15 each which at the end of the day is nothing considering that was that nights accommodation aswell!!!
First impressions of Hanoi and Vietnam MAD…. lets see what the next few days in this crazy city have to offer us.