One month in Poland, family and friends reunion and time to think, this is the way I have spent the time. It was lovely to forget about the pace and routines of everyday life. It helped me realize that Gdynia is my home and that’s where I belong, so after my journey I will most likely settle in Poland. However, for the time being…
… my time in Gdynia has come and I set off to Warsaw on Friday the 13th (January) where together with Basia we would catch a flight to Hanoi (Vietnam) through Moscow airport in Russia. Being too cautious I have arrived in Warsaw about 10 hours before flight. At the airport I have made some friends with cleaners and desk staff within the time, but most importantly lost passport as soon as I got to the airport. It was found by someone and returned to me – that’s a good start :). Basia was later than she said she will be (it involved some heavy drinking the night before). Stressed, but relieved (a least I was because she was laughing all the time) we set off for the boarding.
In Russia we had to wait 23 hours and 40 minutes for the next flight, so we found a nice “3-wall room” where we slept. Moscow Airport offers free internet, but water costs the earth. We were drinking tap water, it’s ok, we have not died. Also, we found a nice black colored Vodka, liquid itself was black (green in the cup, for some reason). In the meantime Natalia, Basia’s cousin, joined us. Together we flought to Hanoi. As we were flying over Himalayas the turbulences were so heavy that we were fearing for our lives and decided that NEVER EVER AGAIN we want to fly (we won’t keep this promise, but that’s what we said at the time).
Hanoi Airport is pretty small, where taxi and bus drivers urge you to go with them and prices are discounted the other way (few times more, rather than less). We walked to the nearest main road and kept walking until Sang picked us up and drove to Hanoi city centre (for free). Very pleasant experience with extremely good guy (if you read it, we want to say thank you).
We have spent good few hours looking for a ride South in the direction of Saigon. Then, tired and in an urgent need for sleep, we considered putting up a tent, which is nearly impossible in the city where every square meter is used for something. So we have found a hotel for $15. Once in there we thought about our black vodka and that it would be good to make use of it. All we needed was cola. When there are 2 girls and only one guy, have a guess who had to go and get it :)
Here I am going to the shop next to the hotel. Suddenly I find myself dragged by the shop owner to the back where his family (mostly men) is sat playing cards. Out of nowhere he gives me a small glass with vodka and cheers with me. I read in lonely planet that it is rude to refuse so I poured it down with him. Then, The same happened with all his family members, and there was quite a few of them. He even introduced me to his niece, nice girl who he believed would make a nice girlfriend. I started getting tipsy so I thanked everyone and got back to the hotel. By the time I got back I was completely drunk. I was missing for about 15 minutes and drunk more than 10 shots.
Thrown in a whirlpool of unexpected hospitality, left me with a great first impression of Asia.