Well… I went for drinks last night and one drink quickly turned into many because one of my colleagues is definitely an alcoholic and was ordering beers for everyone every five minutes! The civilised conversation soon progressed to a huge argument over the American and English language… (Please note, it’s called the English language for a reason!) There were in depth discussions over cookies/ biscuits, sweatshirts/ jumpers, flash lights/ torches and a pitch/field! When teaching in Vietnam, half the course books are written in American and the other English, so if you are English and get stuck teaching from an American book (or vice versa) it’s really annoying! Anyway, the café was meant to shut at 10pm but we were still there at gone 12am…
So at 7am the next morning when my alarm went off for me to go to Ba Vi National Park on the back of Connors* motorbike I decided against it… haha. That can be for another time. Instead we went for a drive around West Lake which was absolutely stunning. I want to rent an apartment there and live in it permanently one day… It is so quaint and quiet, yet twenty minutes down the road is the hustle and bustle of Hanoi city centre.
That evening we went on a night out with Carla’s* friends who were visiting from home. There was eleven of us all out together, and one of her friends bought a round (all the lads had drunk two beers each by this point) and dropped through the floor when it only came to $20… Again, it was a great night.
After a lazy start on Sunday morning we spent the day at the water park. There was twelve of us, made up of Connor’s* house mates and my volunteer friends. I made friends with the volunteers by turning up at their house, telling them I have no friends and getting their numbers! It was an amazing day, and there were next to no queues, the slides were actually really good and the company was great! Carter* spent the whole time running around saying “Next slide, next slide, let’s have a race!!!” and it reminded me of my Dad. So much so that for a moment I got home sick remembering the amazing time I had with my family at Centre Parks just before I came travelling and remembering Dad running around the rapids and getting all excited! It was crazy to think that the next time I would be home, that holiday will have been a year ago…time flies.
We had dinner watching the sun go down and then Connor* and I practised some Spanish! The others decided at 9.30pm to go for another dinner as they were hungry (none of us ate all day until 5.30pm), and Connor and I laughed at them, before ringing them 5 minutes later and telling them to wait for us at the bottom of the road. Spontaneous trips to the Indian restaurant down the road and spending time with friends is what life in Vietnam is all about! Little did I know that the Indian (Foodshop 45) was to become my favourite and most frequently visited place in Hanoi!
So there I was, with what felt like friends who I’d known for ages, in an Indian restaurant, eating chicken tikka masala, in Vietnam, having just spent the day at the water park, with work at 8am the next day. Crazy. The food was delicious and I definitely had room for it!