Hoi An

Hells Angels Vietnam style

July 6, 2005

Today we all got together and rented some motorbikes to visit China Beach and the area around Danang. After checking on the progress of our clothes we all grabbed a motorbike and a quick lesson and were off on our way. I was a bit nervous driving a motorbike in the craziness of the city but felt pretty confident after about 15 minutes. My days riding my friends Honda Sprees must have paid off. As we zipped along the highway we all played leap frog and tested out our limits to how fast we'd drive. We stopped halfway to China Beach for some pictures and shortly after we got back on the rode Selena's front wheel had some problems so she and Cory had to drive back to Hoi An for a new motorbike.

Danny and Paul were ready for some lunch so we headed into Danang to grab a bite and kill some time before Selena and Cory could meet up with us. Finding a place to eat proved harder than we thought so as we made our way back towards China Beach we pulled out onto the highway and Cory and Selena were driving up so we all headed to a restaurant for a quick bite. A local chick actually took us to the restuarant so we thought we were in for a scam or that she'd want some money for giving us directions but it turned out she just wanted us to visit her families shop if we wanted to do any shopping. Marble is everywhere in the area and you can buy huge marble statues of tigers and fish or smaller marble figurines. We weren't in the shopping mood, a surprise to all of us, so we continued on to China Beach. Once at the beach Paul rented a volleyball and we grabbed some shade to relax. Craig and I went for a dip in the ocean and ended up bumping the volleyball around for a bit.

Running around in the sand worked up quite a sweat so we had sand stuck to us everywhere so we went back into the ocean to cool and rinse off. We decided to head back to Hoi An before it got too dark. As we were leaving we got some group pictures in and did a few laps on the new blacktop stretch to see what our bikes could handle. The sunset was absolutely stunning and the area was gorgeous!

The drive became quite nervewracking as we headed back. By this time it was pretty dark and you have to contend w/ pedestrians, other motorbikes, car, buses and bicycles along the road which is poorly lit. People merge at will so you have to be very aware of your surroundings in order not to be hit or hit anyone else. I had a couple close calls at some of the intersections but thankfully we all made it back safe and sound except for Cory's leg burn from his exhaust.

Since this was our last night in town we had to ship all of our clothes home so we made a beeline for the post office to see what the damage was. We were quoted $175 for air mail and $70 for sea mail so obviously we chose sea mail. We had over 14kg worth of clothes stuffed in the biggest box they would allow. I hope the shipment makes it home!!! All and all I think we ordered about 50 pieces of clothes which averaged to be about $10 a piece. Unbelievable!!

After getting all our errands done we met everyone at guess where? Treats! Another "last dinner" as Danny and Paul couldn't make their bus the previous day so we were able to spend another day with them and planned to meet up in Thailand for the Full Moon Party on 7/23. Selena and Cory will be heading on to Taiwan to teach English but hopefully our paths will cross again one day!!!

We loved our week in Hoi An and what we saw of the town was great. Being with friends made the time even more memorable and we can't thank you guys enough for the great times we shared!!

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