Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Happily Hanging in Halong (aka Alliteration is Fun!)

I landed in Hanoi, hoping to spend one night and then catch a boat to Halong Bay. What I had not hoped for was the nasty, rainy weather that greeted me and threatened to stick around for the duration of my visit. I checked into the hostel and went to weather.com hoping for reassurance- rain for the next five days. Obviously, they were hacks and did not know what they were talking about. So I went to wunderground.com- same answer. I tried a couple other sites, none gave me the answer I wanted. I started talking to people returning from Halong Bay trips. What did they know?

I was not sure what to do. The idea of boating, kayaking, snorkeling and hiking in the rain didn't really hold a lot of appeal. But when was the next time I was going to be this close to an almost natural world wonder? Like an idiot (because, really, there is no other word for it) I toyed with the idea of skipping Halong Bay. But, then again, rainy days amidst the hustle and bustle of Hanoi didn't sound so good either. It was one of those odd conundrums that felt very real at the time but looks pretty ridiculous in retrospect. World famous nature site vs. lively cosmopolitan city? Oh, the horrors. Particularly when there was nothing to prevent me from doing both.