Friday, September 11, 2009

A Great Day (videos: me in action + a proposal)

Nha Trang - Ca Na
(Thursday 10.09.2009)

The Proposal: On this lovely day I had my first proposal in Vietnam. It happened in Nha Trang, short before leaving the city, during breakfast. Well, actually it was only a kind-of proposal. The woman to the right, the younger one (she is married and has a child) asked me about whether I'm married or not and whether I plan to do so in Germany or Vietnam. I said that I'm still single and don't know. Thereupon she told me that the woman on the left (the bit older one) likes me and left space for further plans between us two.

Hm, I must admit, I liked the thought of being wanted. But after considering for a moment, I decided to give her a miss. Turned gay and then ran. I figured it just wouldn't have worked...... and probably not just because of the distance between our two countries.

(I recorded this just seconds after the lady told me)


The day before I had actually thought about going away from the big Hanoi-Saigon Highway for the last kilometers, but then next morning I was happy I had changed my mind in the last minute. I was very eased when I realized that after Nha Trang there were not these closely spaced houses, one after the other, that would add their smoke from, cooking or burning stuff, to the street. Even worse when it rained - something that happened every day, since the day I started on the bicycle from Hai Phong - the smoke just got stuck in the air and it would give you far worse headaches than any truck, bus or motorbike gas could give you. Again worse on the bicycle, since one simply needs more air to breath.

Instead I could enjoy the country much better and strangely just that day could smell loads of wonderful 'countryside air'. But what I didn't know, it would remain the only day I could have such fresh breezes, until Saigon-city. Around 3 pm it rained again and it seemed it would do so for the rest of the day. Especially when it looked like such hard rain as I had seen just few days before that, when it wouldn't stop to rain for one and a half days. But after an hour in the rain - during which the time seemed to flow less smoothly, endlessly slow - I was through it. To me it seemed that the dark clouds got stuck within this mountainous region, which I just was about to pass. And when I had left it, my assumption showed to be true, probably.

me in action: Here you see me while riding the bicycle. There's no special effects and I assure you I didn't just sit at home on some home trainer and put me in the video afterwards.

Actually I was not so fast. He was just kind of slow with his motorbike. Also I'm not really so tall as it might seem here, hardly anybody in Europe would consider me tall. People here in Vietnam are just a hint smaller - as you might have heard before. But yes, the proportions just seem different.

(and yes, I do look silly:p)


Around 6 mp I arrived in Phuoc Dan, of which I saw marks already 56 km before, and which I decided should serve as my stay for the night. I had my lunch there. Afterwards I asked for a hotel. I was told to either go to Phan Rang, where I just came from and which lies 10 km behind, or go 20 km in the other direction, where I wanted to go. Of course I didn't go back. 20 km in the dark (short after 6 pm here), I had done this before many times. Although not many times without light. Nor in a rather dangerous country, with its disorderly traffic. And also not with a mid-danger of Malaria (as it should be in this region), so one is advised to stay within closed rooms.

So to make me feel uncomfortable from the start, many many flying subjects hit my face in the dark. But gladly they must have been surprised just as me, so they didn't get the chance to bite. Maybe they even got it bad and went home with a big headache themselves, if at all. Strangely though this lasted only for about 3-5 km and then I didn't notice any insects anymore.

(Ca Na) About an hour and a half later I arrived in the place where I was told to find a hotel. A very small place. But one hotel after the other, hardly any other houses. I had no idea why and that moment didn't think much about it, being tired, but yet enthusiastic in a way, happy about my day. I asked in all of them for prices and then decided for one of the uglier ones, with the better price. But which, how I realized a bit later, is situated directly by the railways. And the street on the other side.

Having a drink outside and then hearing the big vehicles with its utterly loud horn thunder past, made me think that I wouldn't quite have fun at night at that place. I went back to a hotel where the owner offered me a special price for a room without air-condition. With it it would have been 10 $ = 180.000 vnd. I got this one for 120.000 vnd. A room with a better price you can rarely find at guest houses or hotels across the country, as foreigner.

So okay, I preferred this room, because the hotel looked better and the room is at the very end of it, so the farthest away from the street and railways. AND, it is directly at the sea/the ocean! As the owner told me after viewing and as I saw myself when I brought my stuff. Then I was just HAPPY. It was perfect!

A perfect end of a great day. And it promised to become a beautiful morning. And it became one.