10th May Sapa – Andy’s birthday

The photo:

Artistic representation of 10/5/12

The route: an amble through some rice fields, patisseries, and wine bars.

The chat: Today, the first day of AB’s 34th year (so old) started with a high – discovering we could eat breakfast pancakes in our B+B while sporting fluffy white towelling robes (fortunately for the other guests as every single other item of clothing was being washed), followed swiftly by a low – discovering our camera was irreparably broken. Sadly for the any readers looking forward to the dressing gown photos, these, and any other evidence of Boydy’s 33rd birthday will have to remain undocumented, photographically, at least.

After a bad start, we headed off sans camera on our own little self guided trek. We frequently got lost, resulting in numerous short cuts through peoples back yards/rice fields but this was a minor drawback amply compensated by the opportunity to walk through miles of scenic but steep rice terraces and tribal hill villages away from coach parties of trekkers – the photos would have been amazing!

Token trek out of the way for the day, we headed back into town to satisfy the symptoms of chocolate withdrawal, and then nestled into the cosy arms of Sapa Rooms cafe for an evening of red wine drinking. Our celebrations increased on the arrival of a couple from America who were also on a tandem and were cycling around Vietnam and China. Several bottles of wine and hours of story swapping later, we had a firm promise of a bed at one of Colorado’s ski fields any time we needed it. Wierdly, they didn’t seem so excited at the offer of a place to crash within walking distance of the Thomas Hardy monument in Dorchester.

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