Tuesday, 23 February 2010

Tuesday 23rd February

Today we traveled from Da Lat to Nha Trang. Rather than waste another day on the bus, we hired a guide, some bikes and some kayaks and did the 90km the hard way. Da Lat is up at about 1700m and Nha Trang is right down on the coast so most of the cycling was whizzing downhill. :-) There was a killer 3km climb in the middle though, so not all easy riding... You may not believe this, but the road we cycled down was a beautiful new trunk road with smooth tarmac, totally devoid of traffic for two reasons: a) they haven't quite got round to finishing a 4km section to join the two ends together (no one quite knows when this is going to happen), and b) apparently people don't like the new road - it has too many bends (?!?!) so most continue to use the pot-holed dusty single track hellhole death track that is the alternative. Weird!

However the views of jungle covered ravines were beautiful. We saw local people gathering grass to make brooms, baskets of sugar cane and coffee. Also, slightly strangely, men snorkeling in the river looking for "beautiful rocks". This was all we could get out of the guide. Possibly the activity was illegal, but I'm not sure in what way. Maybe just what they'd been smoking beforehand.

On reaching Nha Trang Caroline was offered Marijuana by a stoned motorcyclist. She told him it was bad for him in her best Emma Thompson impression, and gave him a short lecture about the evils of such vices. Middle class breeding comes out... Olly just kept his distance.

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