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Friday, 14 December 2012
Day 3 Vietnam – Imperial City and overnight to Hanoi – Rails and Ruins
We started off the day with an early wake up to pack and be ready to leave for the Imperial City. We walked the short distance to the palace which used to be the home of the last Vietnamese emperor and capital of the country. However when we reached the palace we found that most of the once awe-inspiring wonder was now gone, ravaged by wars and time. The restorations efforts have begun however they still have a long way to go with only the walls and a few of the original buildings remaining. The experience would not be any better if it wasn’t for Lam our wonderful guide who spent one and a half days with us, and three amazing volunteers who spent some of their spare time braiding and platting the girls hair.
We had free time in the afternoon to shop for food to take on the overnight train. Some of us ate at KFC as the temptation of fast food was too strong to resist. True to Luke’s unlucky nature he spilt a whole container of potato and gravy on himself. After lunch we finished packing our bags and set off for the train station but had a lengthy wait ahead of us. When we boarded the train we found our rooms and realised some of us needed to get over our claustrophobic f ears. The tiny hallway that was our rooms had 3 levels and 6 people to a room. The stories of a full packet of M & Ms going all over the floor, people going to the toilet without footwear and just thinking it was wet with water and Miss Notle getting trapped in the tiny smelly toilet will have to wait until our return.
Currently waiting to go to bed and arriving in the Northern Capital City of Hanoi tomorrow morning around 5am Vietnamese time (13/12/2012).