Tuesday, August 2, 2011

The Last Supper: The Overnight Bus in Vietnam

As our last day in Hoi An, Vietnam, drew to a close, Dana and I decided to seek out a nice dinner, knowing that we would be spending the forseeable future on an overnight bus.

From K - Hoi An & Dalat


We found The Secret Garden, a cute restaurant tucked into a side alley off one of Hoi An's main tourist roads, Le Loi.
From K - Hoi An & Dalat



We saw that there was live music every night and we decided to relax in a nice environment. There's nothing wrong with the super-cheap, casual places we normally visit, but it was nice to be in a different environment.
From K - Hoi An & Dalat

From K - Hoi An & Dalat


After some delicious salad & fish, we looked around the restaurant, which really is outside in the middle of a garden.
From K - Hoi An & Dalat


Delicious grilled aubergine:
From K - Hoi An & Dalat

Dana's fish:
From K - Hoi An & Dalat

The restaurant also offers cooking classes, which looked really fun.
The cooking class at a communal table behind the pond:
From K - Hoi An & Dalat


We returned to our hotel at 6:30, and the overnight bus was scheduled to pick us up sometime between 6:30 and 7. Somehow, we almost missed the bus and it was already picking people up down the road. We were shuttled a few blocks away with our backpacks and deposited into an enormous coach filled with reclined seats. I have never seen a "sleeper bus" before and it was very bizarre.

From K - Hoi An & Dalat


After only a half hour, the lights turned off and people started drifting to sleep. I wanted to keep reading but the bus was pitch dark. I fiddled with a light near my head and it emitted a faint glow. Not exactly reading light material. After using a mini mag light for a while, we pulled into a rest stop around 11pm.

In typical Vietnam travel fashion, the bus unloaded into a cafe filled with Vietnamese people eating noodles, meat, and rice. Most of the tourists were very disoriented after sleeping on the bus for a few hours (I suspect some of them were also disoriented thanks to the cheap and ubiquitous Valium sold over the counter around SE Asia).

From K - Hoi An & Dalat

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