“A deserted ribbon of perfection- One of the best coast roads in the world”
-Jeremy Clarkson- BBC’s Top Gear Presenter
I got up early in the morning for my drive up Hai Van Pass. I knew I would have about 6 hours of total drive time and I would want to stop along the way. I was also up early because of the dog that never stops barking that was inhabiting the hostel
I didn’t really want to get on the road that late, but I wasn’t about to take my current bike, so I really had no option. I went for a walk and got a Banh Mi. I had become very fond of a little Banh Mi stand that was only a few blocks up from my hostel. The little old lady who owned the stand was always so sweet to me. She would bring me a tiny little stool, that only fit one of my butt cheeks on it and tell me to sit while I waited the 1 minute for her to prepare my sandwich. She only charges 10,000 Dong per sandwich, which is about .42 cents. How they make money off this is beyond me. My m
My dad called that morning, which helped pass time. He has this weird sixth sense for knowing the perfect time to call. It was really nice to vent about the freak in my room and laugh about my small misfortunes. After our lovely conversation it was time to head back to get my bike. No ride would be complete without an iced tea, so I made sure to stop at my favorite shop, Mr. Good Tea, on the way.
i'm obsessed with Vietnamese tea houses
This drive was truly spectacular. It’s definitely a favorite for locals and foreigners. I was never alone on the road. The locals would have one or two friends on the back of their bikes and would go cruisin by me awhile shouting and waving. I also passed a lot of easy riders, which is another popular way to do the pass. I saw tons of other foreigners experiencing the pass as I was and I would chat with them when stopping for photos and water. The road hugs the side of the hills that plummet into the ocean, and as it snakes along you drive through several hairpin turns that are beyond thrilling. I’ve never experienced anything like this in my life. The views were absolutely stunning.
The actual 13 miles of the pass took me about an hour to drive. I stopped a lot along the way to take pictures and to stretch because my rear was killing me. As I have mentioned before, all that junk in the trunk doesn’t offer shit for padding. My tailbone hurt for days after. At the top of the pass, there are a few abandoned bunkers from the war and it’s a common stop for a rest. They have food and coffee stands that line the road. I decided I would stop here on the way back, so I kept driving.
Hairpin turns on a motorbike are seriously thrilling
That night after I cleaned up, I had full intentions of going to see the fire-breathing dragon bridge. However, I was simply too tired and I didn’t even want to get dinner. I was getting up early the next morning to catch the train to Hue and I knew if I didn’t eat I would regret it the next morning. I decided to go to the Thai restaurant that was right next to my hostel because it was obviously the closest place and that’s how lazy I was. I ordered larb gai, which is my absolute favorite Thai dish and It was delicious! The restaurant was beautiful and It was sad because I could hear the yappy dog at my hostel next door and other customers were complaining and leaving because of the noise. I felt terrible for the restaurant owner for losing business because of a dog that didn’t even belong to them. So sad. Irresponsible dog owners are a real shame. Not a fan.
That night was my worst night in Da Nang. My horrid bunk mate came back drunk with a stock of beers and a bottle of whatever, so he could continue his downward spiraling life in the hostel room while I was trying to sleep. At first I was so heated and I wanted to scream. I made the executive decision that if he was going to keep me up, then I might as well get a few loud phone calls in. I FaceTimed my niece because it was her bday and had a very loud, public conversation at midnight. He kept making sounds of being annoyed so I made sure to talk as long as Audrey was able to talk. Once she got off the phone I decided to try to sleep through his racket of the party he was throwing in his bed.
He continued his nightly ritual of belching, farting and laughing loudly. Then he moved under my bunk AGAIN. So I just got up and moved to a different bunk and was able to get a few hours of sleep. In the AM I had to be up early for the train. I typically don’t act this way, however, I found much pleasure in being as loud as I possibly could. In and out of the room several times, slamming the door each time and dropping things on the ground and crunching up plastic bags. Allowing five alarms to go off on loud and was in no rush whatsoever to turn them off. It was awesome. I needed that release.
I made it to the train early but the train was delayed. I’m glad I’m always stocked on good books because of my dearest friend Annie. She buys me books on Amazon and sends them to my kindle. Bless her heart, she’s an angel. The train was AMAZING. But I’ll tell you about it in the next post!
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