Mekong Delta, Vietnam
It was lovely to lounge around having a relaxed morning and soaking up my surroundings. I had a small breakfast, once again served on my private floating patio and watched the fishing boats and sampans go by. After that I went back to bed with my book, the windows and doors open so I felt like I was on a very comfy boat.
The bathroom in my room was great and reminded me of times in Africa. The small shower room had an electric shower which warmed the water fairly well. I’d discussed my options of a trip out with the lodge for after lunch so I relaxed the entire morning. A big part of me felt like I was wasting time and the other part of me was saying “CTFO Clare!” 🙂 Lunch was served at 12 and after that I did some more reading and even had a little snooze.
At 3pm a boat came to fetch me and I met my tour guide for the afternoon – Hoa Vo. The boat driver took us across the delta and turned down a small, beautiful canal. Hoa showed me which way to go if I wanted to reach Cambodia and which way to the ocean. He told me about being a boy of 11 during the War and seeing American boats sailing up and down the banks and firing into the thick, dense foliage. His mother was killed during the war, she got in the line of fire between the Americans and the VC. He is now 50 years old, speaks amazing English (although his accent is tough to understand) and is a gymnastics teacher at a local school. He has a kind face and a kind way about him.
After we got off the boat we went to a house where we were each given an old fashioned bicycle with a basket on the front. And so began our little trip around the villages of this part of the Mekong Delta. I would recommend this tour to anyone. It cost 300,000VND and lasted about 3 hours. We cycled easily along narrow dirt paths and alongside rice paddies, just like you see in the postcards. Farmers with their conical hats hard at work, the young rice a bright, bright green. Dogs everywhere, chickens everywhere, people almost everywhere. Kids in school uniforms shouted “hello!” to me from wherever they were. On the roads people passing by on scooters and bikes mostly stared at me or smiled and/or said hello.
We stopped at a local cafe and had a coke and ate a fruit, which I wish I could remember the name of. On and on we cycled and I stopped regularly to take photos. Along the way Hoa told me snippets of information and showed me all sorts of plants. After a few hours on our bikes we headed back to the boat where Mr Nam (skipper) was waiting for us. I got back to my floating house about 3 hours later, dirty but happy.
Dinner was served to me on my patio and I drank some more beer and wrote down a lot of my blog. Finally I went to my comfy bed and slept like a queen under the cocoon of my delightful mozzie net. Heaven!