Leaving Vietnam...Hello India...

Trip Start Feb 14, 2005
Trip End May 06, 2005

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Sunday, March 6, 2005

(Peter) In a few hours, we will be getting into the meat of our trip as we head over to India for a month. We are very excited and somewhat nervous, at the same time...More about India to come...

As for Vietnam, our last stop was Hanoi, the capital of the country. Hanoi was great, like other parts of the country. I have to say, I have loved every place that we have stopped by since arriving in this country.

A couple of the highlights of our stay in Hanoi included our trip to Ha Long Bay (beautiful - the best scenery that I saw in Vietnam by far) and just hanging around the Old Quarter district (great street food and good shopping for little trinkets and souvenirs).

As I leave Vietnam, I wanted to mention a few last side-thoughts on Vietnam:

- "Not so lonely..." All of the tourists in Vietnam, including ourselves, are walking around carrying a copy of "The Lonely Planet". It's very embarrassing!

- "Taxi drivers suck!..." There is no way around getting screwed by taxi drivers. We have no familiarity of the territory, and some of the taxi meters have different rates that others. It's always a 50/50 gamble getting in one of the taxis. That is probably our biggest worry during our travels.

- "From Rags to Riches..." After staying in a $10 hotel in Nha Trang, $15 hotels in Danang and Hue, we had a culture shock as we checked in to our extravagant Sheraton room in Hanoi. We used the points that we accumulated from my Starwood American Express card to get 3 free nights at the Sheraton. However, we did get strange looks walking in with our travel back packs and scrubs...Oh well.

- "Pringles - the international choice for potato chips..." In the 2 countries that we have visited on this trip (Vietnam and Cambodia) and the 2 countries in Central America that we visited last year (Costa Rica and Belize), we have seen Pringles but no other imported potato chip brand. It's a useless thought, but it's funny how we always see Pringles.
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