Danang, Vietnam : Sharing a Train Seat with a Cockroach!

Danang is a small town in mid-Vietnam. It is somewhat off the beaten track, and we did not see another tourist there. We spent a pleasant day and night there, looking around the markets.

Rooftops, DanangThere was a very pleasant boardwalk along the river, so we had a relaxing stroll, watching the boats sail by. There were also several sculptures. And by several, I don’t mean 3 or 4. I mean about 10 billion. I think they are made locally, so I assume they wanted to showcase their talents, in sculpture form.

Sculptures, DanangRiverside walk, DanangWe found dinner in a food court in a mall (more on the food in a later blog!) and enjoyed playing in the amusement arcade in the mall, where the games were fun and cheap.

We were approached by some kids of about 6 who were taking English lessons. There was an English tutor area in the Mall, where parents could leave kids to have an English lesson – presumably while Mum and Dad did some shopping. Being nosy, I looked at the posters showing English words. There was a poster for Animals, Fruits, and Vehicles. There was also a poster showing “Dinosaurs from the Cretaceous Period”. This poster featured the “Euoplocephalus”, the “Psitticosaurus”, and the “Muttaburrasaurus” – essential words to learn in any language, I’m sure you’d agree 😉  The kids were charming and wanted to chat to me, asking “Hello!” “What’s your name?”, “How are you?” “Bye!” and giggling. When my BF spoke to them, they all ran off!

Getting to Danang

We took a train from Hue to Danang. Before we boarded the train we had food poisoning. We also had a 3 hour train ride to endure with questionable toilets. We were glad of our Immodium. I visited the toilets at Hue train station but as expected they were a bit grim – water flooded the floor with “dirt”, let’s say, floating in it. The toilets on the train were not much better. I resigned myself to sitting quietly in my equally filthy seat and waiting for the Immodium to kick in.  At that moment a cockroach decided to put in an appearance, crawling out of a hole in the arm of my seat. I jumped about 2 foot in the air and then refused to sit in my seat again. Luckily there was a spare seat down the train carriage, so I took up home there. The rest of the journey went better, as I was sat behind a boy of about 8, who initiated an enjoyable game of Peekaboo through the gap in the seats.

Getting Away

All did not go smoothly for us in Danang. When we arrived at the hotel they had no record of our reservation.  We booked an onward bus through the hotel, but when we came down in the morning, early for the bus, we were told it had already gone. They organized a taxi which took us to a small waiting room, where we waited for almost an hour with a western couple who said they lived in Vietnam and this type of delay is not unexpected. After around 40 minutes they started to get irritated and complained to the staff. It was all a bit stressful at the time when we weren’t sure what was going on. But all’s well that ends well – we got the bus to Hoi An in the end!

Next blog: Hoi An, Vietnam

Previous blog: Hue, Vietnam

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