Dien Bien Phu - Quynh Ngai

Trevor Long

Dec 23, 2020
Day 10 and an interesting day it was but let's start at the beginning.
Up for the dawn and took a walk through the streets for coffee to no avail. Just one Pho shop open, taking the Covid threat rather seriously, so back to the hotel for a basic breakky to get us away.
Houng back on comms and we headed North out of Dien Bien Phu with a nice hotel in SAPA set as our eventual destination. A nice settled pace was my plan as last night my sidekick went into an adrenalin coma by 6.30 and the next four hours I worked to her lovely dulcet tunes . The Cardo on some chilled Blues. It would be a relatively easy day. Well the road got better and better and before you know we were back on song. Interrupted by few sections under construction but generally an awesome road built more for my 1100S Monster than the steed I was on. The Huong also continuing to support the local sellers and keep the GIVI boxes full .
Just as we were to turn to follow the Da River which we'd stayed on night 6 much farther East, to a Hydro Dam we were stopped at a Covid checking station. There was some conversation and the end result, as there had been four cases overnight in SAPA, was we were to turn around or face a 21 Day Isolation to leave the Lao Cai province later.
Disappointed for Huong as SAPA was the highlight for her this trip we turned. As good as the QL12 was coming up I'd wanted to do the top section of the 6 and, so happy we did. Lot of construction on the road and a bit broken up it places but the scenery is just gorgeous. Things happen for a reason I like to think and very happy with that ride.
To the Trung Kien Hotel overlooking again the Da River and we were set for the night after quite a big ride. An hour or so later, showered and catching up with work, just coming on dusk, there's a knock on the door and we are told to leave? What! You must go! Not friendly!
Reluctant to leave near dark but not wanting a scene that the way I felt might end badly we packed up and left.
What had happened is Huong booked in and went up to the room while I went to take some photos down the river. Last name Long, no problem. On my return seeing I was a foreigner I guess the boss was alerted and they went into melt down.
In any case a much nicer accommodation just across the river. Lovely people at Pauon Ecolakes and this riverfront bungalow is bang on. Again things happen for a reason. I will however be making it quite public where to and not to stay in the area.
The first time in my nine years in Vietnam I've felt discriminated against and whilst I understand the fear, so uneducated since my passport clearly shows I haven't left the country since the very beginnings of Covid and our health declarations clearly show we've not been in a Covid affected province much less town.
Anyway all good and The Huongs dead to the world again

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