The last few pictures of our trip
We have now been home for two weeks and we are slowly adjusting to normal Canadian life. We are a little late finishing up our blog, but better late than never. Our last week in Northern Vietnam was great and we ended on a great note. Lets see if I can remember what we did with ourselves.
After we left Hoi An we went to Hue, a city chalk full of historical places and pagodas. We took a cycle rickshaw ride into the walled palace and spent a lot of time wandering around the ruins and lush gardens. We saw elephants, bonsi (much to Nathaniel's delight), intricate mosaics and lots of ponds filled will lilies and colorful qoi. The next day, while Nathaniel took the day off to sleep and read, I took a motorcyle tour of the surrounding countryside. I got to witness the harvesting of rice, watch a monk ceremony, scare a bunch of locals by picking up a catapillar, walk around a feild with waterbuffalos, and walk on a three hundred year old bridge.
A water buffalo in the countryside.
Farmers harvesting rice by hand.
Insence drying in the sun
Visiting the royal summer palaces of the ancient monarchy
The last four days in Vietnam we took a three day cruise around Halong Bay in a large wooden boat callled a "junk". It was the perfect way to end our trip and a great way to just relax, enjoy captivating scenery, do some tanning, swimming, mountain biking and reading. We had a great little cabin aboard the boat and we quickly made friends with our crewmates. We ate a lot of seafood, some of which Nathaniel caught while night fishing with the locals. Apparently squid fishing is best done at night- Nathaniel had squid ink all over his shirt the next day.
Nathaniel leaping off the roof of the boat with a friend.
We are so glad that we have been able to use this blog to share our trip with our family and friends. It has also saved us from having to answer a million questions about our trip since we have gotten home. In many ways we feel as though many of you have shared our adventures with us and we have throughly enjoyed hearing from those of you that wrote to us. We decided to end this blog with a bunch of questions that people have been curious about.
Strangest foods eaten on our trip: Guinea pig, alpacha, lemon ants, tripe, ugali, blowfish, abeloni,
Number of different beds we slept in: Ninty-five
Kilometers covered in 8 months: We are still working on this one.
- First few hours in Gautemala city, which was the first city on our trip.. We spoke no spanish and we kept asking where we could find the bus, which we thought was pronouned "une Coche". We later discovered that nathaniel had been telling everyone that he wanted to ride a pig. It's no wonder people kept giving us strange looks.
- Walking to our hotel in San Salvador and being followed multiple times by questionable characters.
- Discovering that our backpack was stolen an hour into a eight hour bus journey .There was no way for us to contact the authorities or cancel our credit cards until we reached our destination.
- The dalla, dalla ride in Dar Es Salem when we were narrowly missed by a transport truck out of control. Instead of being hit, we watched the truck slam into two other dalla dalla's waiting for passengers and witnessed multiple deaths.
- Spending 36 hours in transit and being sent back to Africa after being denied entry into India.
- Touring Rajasthan with our insane driver Mahabil. ( It gave new meaning to the term "white knuckled")
- Having a tiger run full speed towards us with no cage in between.
Award for most aweful toilet:
On an overnight train in India I had to balance over a hole cut in the floor of the train, while it swerved and clicked over the tracks. I couldn't use the walls to balance myself as they were smeared with feces and vomit. The second worst toilet was in Costa Ricca and it was covered in cobwebs and massive spiders.
Best Memories: * really there is too many great memories to name... but these are just a few
Jocelyn: Mountain biking down the world's most dangerous road in Boliva for five hours. SOOO FUN!
: Learning how to make chapati (a kind of flat bread) in the streets with the African women in Zanzibar
: Exploring the blue city of Johdupur and sipping chai tea with the merchants.
: Repelling down the face of a waterfall in Vietnam
: Sleeping in a tent on the Seregetti and listening to lions prowl around and roar at night.
: Releasing baby turtles on a beach in Gautemala
: Haggling with vendors in Spanish over the price of coral and turquoise
: Riding a camel and staying in a tent in the Thar Desert for Valentines Day
: Swimming with sharks in Koa Toh, Thailand
: Playing with baby tigers
: Spending hours apon hours of time with my husband with no distractions.
Nate: Still to come