Sunday, 18 November 2012
And Then It Rained
Hoi An. Lovely town but the weather is sapping my soul. It has not not rained for about 4 hours in the last 3 days. I have reenacted all the movie rain scenes I can think of and looked into Ark plans. In a small town where tailoring is the main attraction, the majority of the roads are pedestrianised, the rain is biblical and you have a party member down one foot there is very little to do aside from sloth, eat or drink. On the plus side we have discovered that the local coffee is delicious and it is almost always happy hour somewhere for a cocktail or three.
A pick of noteworthy happenings over the last 4 days:
The loss of my second toenail:
After discovering my toe was starting to smell like Durian I investigated further and realised it was being held on by a scab. A very minor amount of movement and off it came. (As a whole this time, no snipping) and just like that 9 became 8. And no. It is no easier the second time round and no, you never get used to the appearance of a naked toe (I feel like the sheep in the Boundin' Pixar short).
A spa seemed like an almost perfect rainy day activity - although anything foot related was out for two of us and a massage was out for poor scabbed up Lauren - so we went to the recommended local one. We set out in the driving rain 'just around the corner', so round the corner we stumbled and 5 minutes later passed the back exit to our hotel which was right in front of the spa, so that was a completely pointless trip. My back, shoulder and neck massage (lovely albeit a bit greasy) came with head, face and boob as a bonus (NOT RELAXING) and the three of us were all in the same room laid out like sausages ruining each others zen from time to time. My manicure basically involved cutting my nails to a third of their usual length and lacquering them in a flesh tone (so they look not unlike my nailess toes) but it was a mostly enjoyable experience (who doesn't like communal kimonos?).
Sitting outside at dinner (momentary pause between downpours) we heard a shriek, a growl and a squeak and a dog had caught a rat and left it twitching its final few twitches right there in front of us. It was vile (the rat was almost cat sized)
Lauren and The Ants
Even in the nicest of hotel rooms one would be wise to be wary when drinking out of cans. An unattended can of sprite can quickly recruit friends. Being a fan of flat sprite Lauren checked if her lunchtime can would be ok to drink. 'Sure, go for it, you love flat sprite' chirped Harris. So she indulged in the remaining half a can. Until she felt something moving in her mouthful, glanced down at the rim and realised it was crawling with ants. She then hopped (swifter than Usain Bolt) to the bathroom and ejected the ants into the sink. We now drink from glasses.
Today (Sunday) has been far more entertaining. The rain was still there (standard) but was more of a constant spit/penetrating mist than notebook style monsoon. Nothing a poncho couldn't keep out. A lot of the bicycles here have a padded 'seat' on the back so Lauren hopped on for a trial and Ta Dah! We were mobile again. With a combination of Lauren being a most trusting and cooperative passenger and my pedal power we were well on our way (although the bike occasionally feels like it might buckle). (We have also only had one very slow motion fall when stationary). We booked some onwards sleeper bus tickets (terrified) and set off to the beach beach. I can imagine in the sun it is delightful but in the drizzle it did remind me a little of Aberdeen. Seeing as we were the only people on the beach (enjoying a hot coffee) the local beach patrol descended upon us to foist off their wares. One chap was very nice, sat and chatted to us and said how he was studying English so he could become a tour guide and that he sold his tat on days off to improve his English. The moment he realised we weren't going to buy any of his (quite frankly hideous) wrist tat he left without so much as a goodbye. Which was charming. Still it was nice to be out and about and seeing a bit more of the town safe in the knowledge that we were heading to a sunny beach the following evening.
Mui ne, we're coming! Please keep fingers and toes crossed the sleeper bus isn't the death box I think it'll be.