My eyes open and quickly scan my immediate surroundings.
“OMG”,”how long was I snoring”, “did anyone hear that?”, “did anyone see that?”, “are people laughing about it?”
Talk about paranoia while travelling on the coach!
Rewind a bit. It is 7:30AM, we are supposed to be at our meeting point at 7:45AM. Three-fifths of the group are not accounted for yet!
It is just another day in the Vietnam trip.
We are going on a boat tour around Cat Ba, and Ha Long Bay which will last around four hours. Now one of our group gets sea sick so how we managed to convince her to go on a boat I will never know.
Islands! All The Way Down
But we did get to see sights like this.
We were told that in most cases, the fishing communities here rarely go back on land after getting their education while growing up. How true that is is a matter for debate (or Google). But for now, we can take Hung’s word on this (he is our tour guide).
Also, the query of how the islands and bay were formed started a debate (volcano vs tectonic activity).
As we are slowing sailing? trawling? floating? through these islands, various interesting things catch your eye. Little temples or shrines. private resorts for tour companies. But the major question I had was: “Where would the Evil Lair(tm) be hidden”
After a few hours of sailing, we had to transfer to another boat in the middle of the bay. A larger boat that had been set up for us to have lunch.
Lunch was good!
Any place that does soft shell crab is good in my eyes.
So there is our group, plus one extra on our table. He is a firefighter (mad respect – did I just say that?) from France, who has been travelling for about a year, to places like French Polynesia, the Bahamas, Thailand, and will be heading to the Philippines.
And we eat the food as it is piled up in front of us. Whole sea bass, spicy croquettes, noodles, rice, the soft shell crab (of course).
By the time we have finished, we’ve made a mess of the fish, with leftover food all around the table.
The table next to us, however, have managed to pick the fish clean. It is like something you see in cartoons where there is literally only bones left. Not only that they have piled all their plates, bowls, saucers, ready to be picked up. And their table is immaculate.
One day, I hope to be as good as these aunties, and uncles.
Goodbye Ha Long Bay, and Cat Ba
It has been an interesting time for sure.
And now into the aforementioned coach (and snoring). Hanoi, we are coming back!