To Ha Long Bay

vietnam 204We just stopped at this place. I suppose it is really just the ultimate souvenir shop. The coaches pull up at the front door, passengers pour out, make their way through about six different halls, each chock a bloc with hand made souvenirs and then reach back door just in time to get onto their coach which has come round to meet them a the exit. The difference though is the youngsters shown in this photo making the souvenirs. They were all born with defects due to their parents being affected by agent orange. they are doing some incredible handiwork. Hand painted silks, hand woven cashmere pashminas, enameled painted ware etc. I was spoiled for choice.



I am now on board the junk where we are to stay overnight.
vietnam 216

For some reason I have been given the best cabin on the ship. It is in the bows and has its own private balcony.vietnam 213

vietnam 212





Since the last paragraph, I have climbed 400 steps into one of the caves that are within one of these amazing limestone formations. I have participated in a Vietnamese spring roll cooking class and have enjoyed a delightful dinner. The staff are very keen to please and are happy to fulfill my (to them) baffling dietary requirements. To my great surprise I was awarded a certificate to prove that I rolled the neatest spring roll of the entire class. I didn't admit that I had trained for years with holishkes!


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