Our boat crossed the border yesterday afternoon at about 5pm. We are now in Vietnam. And about 45 seconds later I noticed the difference. The wifi sprung to life, the cappuccino machine was fixed, the river buzzed with activity and the fields surrounding us were abundant with full crops.
According to the staff on the boat, the Vietnamese economy is booming. And you can see why. Everyone is super busy here. As I sit here, on the top deck of the boat, the locals are out and about, getting shit done even at this early hour.
Meanwhile, back in room 204, Mum is having a lie in. It is her birthday today. I have already put a bottle of champers on ice, and Chef Brian is in the kitchen preparing her birthday cake.
My kids call my Mum “Big Mumma”. The reasoning behind this is because I was always called Mumma, not Mum. And when they put two and two together, she was christened Big Mumma, even though she is a lot smaller than me. She likes it a whole lot more than Nanna or Grandma.
But life on the boat here is not always plain sailing. Big Mumma has come down with a nasty head cold. I scoured the boat for medicinal options yesterday, and now we have an impressive stash of pharmacuiticals in our cabin. Most of them have instructions written in foreign languages, so our friend John, the American doctor, has been having fun deciphering the main ingredients and is dishing them out accordingly, so she doesn’t overdose on anything.
The newly joined South African couple didn’t have anything to add to her drug haul, but we know where to go is we need superior contact lens cleaning fluid.
So Mum turns 69 today. It is a memorable birthday I suspect, one that is synonymous with sexual innuendo. But that is about the only sexy thing on board. And, lets be frank, that is not even that sexy. But what is interesting is that the humidity is high today, my friends, and we are about to embark on an “excursion” to a little village that specialises in silver smithing.
So I must away to prepare for extreme chafe. Socks, CHECK. Roll on deodorant under the chesticals CHECK. Bike pants under the shorts CHECK. Nerves of steel CHECK.
To be continued….