Bonus post – a tribute to the late Dave Allen

So I wasn’t going to write anything today but our morning evoked memories of my childhood and watching the extremely funny comedian Dave Allen on tv with my parents. Children look up his clips on YouTube. He always finished his show with “Thank you. May your G-d go with you.” Whatever your religion, find your traveller’s prayer and say it before getting in a car here!!

I’ll say now that we arrived safely, and didn’t see or cause any accidents and that our driver Phong is very experienced and superb. However a journey in Vietnam is a dilemma – travel with your eyes open and see the colour of the flowers, the beautiful trees, the variety and style of buildings, the mountains and villages, the street vendors and your fellow journeymen – scooters with cages (yes plural) of piglets, massive wigwam construction holding utensils for sale over the front half with the rider sandwiched underneath peering through, upturned wheelbarrow on the seat with the rider sitting in the middle, baskets of flowers and food the families, yes families, on a single scooter – or do you close your eyes so you can’t see the near death experience that occurs every 30 seconds as scooters weave in and out, texting and smoking at the same time, bicycles and scooters drive the wrong way down the main road, cars and lorries form three lanes in an attempt to overtake, when it’s a dual carriageway plus narrow scooter lane and children on bikes just join and leave the melée as and when. And if you want to stop, then just stop and get out – even if you are on a roundabout, in the middle of a junction like spaghetti junction – just do it! Even if you closed your eyes you’d hear the continual honking and the sound of the lightstick being pulled aggressively to flash the headlights to raise your blood pressure

Thankfully we are now relaxing, cruising around Halong Bay – and all is good with the world.

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