Another beautiful but tough day in Vietnam. I had an interesting 5am wake-up alarm today, I swear I set ‘Shake it Off’ as the song to wake me up, but perhaps I accidentally set it to Apple’s newly introduced ringtone ‘trying to hock up my left toe-nail’, perhaps this came in the last automatic iOS update, nevertheless I shall be writing to Apple to ask them to change it, I’ve reset it again for tonight, let’s see what happens..
We started the morning at 6.30am in Mai Chau and headed off into villages time forgot, people here live very simply and very happily. Along the way we passed through flooded rivers, mud tracks, orange farms, rice paddies and numerous fields filled with sugarcane, corn and tea, truly beautiful and when I get to post the videos you will see. Unfortunately for me, during this beautiful ride my shock absorbers stopped working so for the remaining 100km today I literally rode a pneumatic drill! It’s only Day 2 but does anyone know where you can buy triple padded shorts?..
The kindness of the Vietnamese people was experienced in abundance today, approximately 85km into the ride it was 39 degrees, I stopped by a house in a very rural area and was struggling, the family came out, smiles on their faces and greeted me, inviting me into their home for a drink. Incredible. Via sign language and talking slowly in English (?!?! ... I am a Brit abroad) I very badly tried to tell them the story of cyclefor16, and I think their smiles and thank you’s mean’t they understood what we are doing, or now to think of it, perhaps it was thank you now please leave... when I upload the videos you will see this beautiful family.
One other observation from the day is the size of Water Buffalo poo’s... they are huge!! If I hit a crusty 3 day old Water Buffalo poo I’m going straight over the top of my handlebars and probably into one which is 5 metres in front (hopefully not another 3 day old crusty... if I’m lucky a warm 3 hour old one sans flies), they’re everywhere! at one point it was as if I was riding through a mine field of Water Buffalo poo.
We finished the day at 5pm, another climb to end the day, I don’t recall recruiting Vietnam Sadomasochism Cycling tours, but 2 out of 2 is rough!
To end the day, Ronnie and I celebrated fathers day in a fantastic restaurant, according to Trip Advisor it is spacious, and represents the Cuc Phuong national park. From the picture below you can see that the restaurant is indeed spacious, and no doubt the long-tailed rodent represented the nearby national park, Trip Advisor was right.
I managed to get the drone up in the air today briefly, here are a couple of shots..
Up at 6am for day 3 tomorrow, Cuc Phuong to Tam Coc.
Thanks for making a difference, and helping save a life.