Day 4 recap: We saw the sun today!

We set off from Tam Yen (in Ham Yen) and rode 90+ km to Vi Xuyen today. The past few days have been either drizzling or overcast but today the sun came out in the afternoon and the temperature was perfect for riding. I almost thought about taking my leggings off (that I’ve been wearing over my bike shorts) but decided not to because I didn’t want to get gross bike short tan lines 🙂

We overshot our intended distance today when we were looking for a hotel and happened to ride into the next town. Oops! But a good oops because that means less riding tomorrow. Margaret and I were both very relieved to see the sign for guesthouse as we rolled into Vi Xuyen around 4 pm.

In other news, we’ve figured out the Vietnamese word for fried rice, which is so much more satisfying than rice noodles and broth. Plus it comes with a fried egg on top! Super biking fuel for our hungry stomachs.

As I’m riding, people stare and shout HELLO while waving. I don’t think they see many foreigners in these parts so I try to smile and respond, which results in a fit of giggles as I pass. It makes me happy and gives me a little burst of energy to keep pedaling.

Our interactions with Vietnamese people have been positive for the most part. I was ripped off at the airport and many other people have annoyingly tried to charge us double the price for food, but usually they bargain down or we just head to the next little restaurant. Today a lady with a roadside fruit stand offered us free persimmons when we stopped to take a look at her produce. Conversation was difficult, but we felt touched by her kindness and tried to express our gratitude. After dinner this evening, the woman who cooked our food offered us a little cup of tea which tasted bitter and kind of medicinal but cleansed my palate from the salty pho we had eaten. For all the times that we’ve stopped to ask directions, people have been very helpful (and reliable- which isn’t always the case in China).

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Some of our scenery for the day.

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Margaret at the fruit stand.

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Town we stopped in for lunch.

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Road signs, propaganda and a river that we rode along.

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