To Hoi An, Wed 2nd March,

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Big day, less wind, yea! Then the rain….

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Great market, aggressively patrolled.

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Natural rubber.

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Even the fishermen use the same kit as us.

We left early, just after dawn. Even by then there were a group of people fishing on the coast. The really great news is that the wind has died down a bit, and, no rain. Sooo happy.

We started going on one of Paul’s ‘tracks’, which looked like a short cut, but might have been longer. However it took us through a very remote village with a great market. Linda started taking a few photos, and an old chap who looked ‘ex-military’ told us very firmly ‘No photo’. Maybe because we were close to My Son, and people were still raw? Maybe he was a grumpy chap? Who knows. The only words of English he seemed to know were ‘No photo’, which he was keen to practice. We respected his wish, which was a shame. Hey ho.

The coast road was great, lovely intermittent views of the rolling East China Sea, and small villages. Constant ‘Hellos’ from children, kept us smiling. Even the odd ‘Good morning, how are you?” from slightly older people. No more ‘no photo’ people. Sadly only 20km until we reached the main highway again.

Lunch was in a roadside cafe, having cycled 40km on the dreaded Highway 1. Nice, friendly, clean and £4 including 2 coke’s. We can afford that.

After lunch, life changed. Firstly the coast road again.Small tracks, friendly villages, sand and sea. So nice compared with Highway 1. We also came across 100’s, no, probably 1,000’s of tombs. They seem dotted randomly along the coast, some grand and some just sand with a small headstone. We guess in death as in life. Rich folk have grand graves, poorer ones a mound of sand.  These were interesting. The other thing that changed was …. rain. And lots of it. We became totally drenched. As often the case, in adversity comes great moments. We had stopped by the road side and a moped came past. This was unusual as the road was so quiet. What was also unusual was the driver stopped and asked us if we were OK? Good English! Had a chat and said we were fine. She was on her way to Hoi An for a job as an Hotel receptionist having done a degree in English. Said goodbye. 10 minutes later she was back with waterproof ponchos! How lovely! We both realise they don’t look great but they made us smile – in fact it made Linda laugh. A lot. She nearly fell off her bike.

Arrived in Hoi An, couldn’t find the homestay. Another random good moment. A local chap asked us where we wanted to go. We said ‘Am Bang Beach homestay”. He said ‘I own that, come with me. Are you Paul and Linda?”. Yippee!!

We tried to dry out, failed, and just went for food and beer. Even then there was an issue. The local Cham Islands were due a power test so Hoi An had had no power all day, but it was due to come on around 5.30 pm. It did. Then went off again. And on,and off, and on … you guessed. However, the restaurant coped well. Great food, cool beer.  It worked.

126Km successfully done. Worries over. We both agreed rain is (slightly) better than strong wind on the nose. Only slightly, mind you. Overall, a really good day’s cycle.  One to remember.

Now we hope for a few days of no wind, no rain, even sun would be probably too much to ask. But beer we can almost guarantee. Phew.

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