Escape from Hanoi

Had a pretty crap day today to be honest, but tomorrow is looking good. My cold is finally leaving, so thats something, but i woke up with my jaw hurting, and that kinda set the tone for the day.

Me and Steffan and the 2 Canadian guys were meant to be leaving on the bikes today.  The only issue was Steffans bike, which had clouds of smoke coming out when he took it for a test ride. It was meant be sorted this morning, so the plan was to pick it up, strap on the rucksacks and go.

Things fell apart pretty much immediately when i went to collect my bike from the bike park where i left it overnight.  You pay 10000 dong a night and they are SUPPOSED to look after your bike, and stop anyone nicking it. It was still there, but one of the footpegs and the sidestand had been snapped off and were lying on the floor next to the bike. Cue swearing. And the bike park people attempting to deny resposibility. And me spending 10 minutes pointing at the bike, the footpeg, and them, in no uncertain terms. Until they took it away and got the footpeg welded back on. So that was a wasted hour.

Then i finally swung my leg over the towering thrusting demon that is Pooey, Steffan clambered aboard and we set off to the garage, where we found out that they hadnt fixed the bike, or indeed done anything to it at all. Steffan was of the opinion that since he had already paid for the bike, the only way he could apply any pressure on them to get it sorted was to sit there all day until they fixed it.

The original suggestion for his problem was piston rings, which sounded about right, but they clearly weren’t keen on actually doing it since it was a big job, so they messed around for about 3 hours on other bikes and then said they were going to change the exhaust. I had no faith that this would make any difference. I was right.

So we basically waited around the whole day, and the bike (which we’d been promised would be ready in the morning), remained unfixed. Then the head mechanic said he was going home. Steffan, who’d been desplaying his best dutch chilling technique for days, was not happy, and told them it had to be ready for the morning, no excuses. And, finally, they bit the bullet and changed the piston rings. It took them 3 hours and we finally got the bike at 8 in the evening.

Steffan is, as i write, riding it very slowly around Hanoi to bed them in as best he can before we leave in the morning. At 5.30am supposedly. At very slow speed probably. But finally, escape beckons. I cant wait.


~ by zendog888 on 13/11/2010.

5 Responses to “Escape from Hanoi”

  1. Get your self a boom box so you can The Ride Of The Valkyries as you apraoch each small village 😛 Enjoy your freedom brothership

  2. That’s what happens when you deal with foreign types. Had I been there in my Khaki shorts and white pith helmet things would have got done!

    • I think you should post hywel a cut out of your self to ensure that shit gets done where ever he may be.

  3. where r u now? I’m heading south, so maybe we meet up somewhere on the way?

  4. a new adventure awaits…:)

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