Share on Pinterest

Most of Vietnam was cold. And rainy. It was something I wasn't expecting and was something that made me not want to ever do anything but curl up in the hostel lounge watching movies. I had to adopt the mantra we had set for ourselves on our trip to Hyder: next time. Next time I will do the Mekong Delta. Next time I will see Ho Chin Minh's mausoleum. Next time I will ride a motorbike through the central highlands. Next time I will trek through Sapa. Next time I will appreciate the beauty of Halong Bay....

If you'd asked me six months ago I don't think I'd tell you that on January 3 I'd be in Hanoi, Vietnam, grilling my own meat on the sidewalk, ordering too many passion fruit mojitos because we got back to the bar with just five minutes left of 2-for-1 ladies night, that I'd be drinking rum and cokes and stealing people's buckets at a bar that was hidden from police interruption. But that is how I celebrated six months of travel....

You would think that being in a country where male backpackers seem to far outnumber female everywhere I go would be heaven. But, quite frankly, it's getting old. You never really know if someone actually likes you for you or if they like that you're a girl and you're there. It didn't help that on the day I arrived in Hanoi, as Matilda and I chilled out in the common room watching movies, I found out that Gabriel, who I haven't heard from since Thailand, is in Vietnam, going the opposite direction. And so we probably crossed paths at some...