Today, Michelle, Linda, and I decided to head up to Nha Trang, the main beach destination in Vietnam. We had to get there by bus, another a four hour journey up north, and after my last bus experience, I wasn’t exactly excited. Unfortunately, bad bus luck followed me, we had some major bus troubles between Mui Ne and Nha Trang.
We waited for our bus in the hotel lobby and had been told that the bus would come at one. At one-thirty, we asked reception when it was coming, and they said two. Finally, at two-thirty it arrived. Then when we got on the bus, we soon learned that the air-con was hardly working and the bus was packed. They moved us to the very back of the bus, where soon, thanks to a fellow passenger, an older Vietnamese man, we discovered we had a small window. This helped us in the journey, and we were immediately grateful to our new friend, even if we couldn’t communicate.
We thought we were on the way and ready to go, until the bus pulled over to the side of the road. The bus driver and his companions got out with wire, scissors, and tape. They repaired something, and we got back on our way, until ten minutes later we were back on the side of the road again. Then back on the road, until ten minutes later we were back on the road again…for good, finally.
About half way through the bumpy journey, we stopped off at a rest stop overlooking the sea. This one was nicer than the one last journey, not much nicer, but it did the job. We got back on the road, and everything was easier the rest of the way, even with all of the roadwork. Our neighbors offered us fruit, though we politely declined, not knowing the type of fruit, and we sat back and enjoyed the amazing views. It’s as if you almost get used to traveling this way, and your heart clams down, you stop thinking of the worst, and you enjoy the scenery because really it’s pretty amazing to be in Vietnam.
Even though travel is difficult here, it’s something you have to do to really get a feel for the country. Buses are the cheapest form of travel, if you can withstand the beeping, serving, and being packed into a bus that may or may not have air-con. How could we really complain though when our bus ticket only cost the equivalent of four US dollars?