We dropped off Jeff first and then me. I had to catch a train down to Hue at 11pm. But I was still penniless. To make a long story short, my guide Tony stayed with me until my finances were settled. We had dinner together. He took me to his travel agent's office to get the train tickets and another person's hotel to finally get some cash.
But it was a super-sticky situation. At one point, one of the people we met suggested that the travel agent take my iPhone in exchange for the train tickets since I was holding them and hadn't paid for them yet (this was before I took out the cash). All while he was calling me aunty--which sent me over the edge. Seriously shady. I told him he was a cheat and that I didn't like him at all. He just smiled. Then I turned to Tony and started in on him, and asked if was he trying to get me killed. It was weird. The whole experience felt like I was in an asian gangster film. There I was--this ang mo chick--being drug all over town with all of my luggage, unshowered and exhausted, deep into Vietnamese-only speaking areas trying to figure out what was going on . . . Like I said before: if you aren't living on the edge of death in Asia, you are doing something wrong.
Thankfully everything turned out okay. Tony got me to the train station. We hugged. I got on the train and found my bunk, turned around and Tony was there again to make sure I had gotten on the right train car and found the right bunk. Yes, yes, yes. Everything is fine. It's 1030pm, I'm dirty and about to sit in my own filth for the next 12 hours. All's good. He left, I met the three people I was sharing my cabin with, and then we all fell asleep. Peacefully rockin' away as the train pulled out of the station in Hanoi. More soon . . .
Wanna read Vietnam, parts 1 and 2? Check them out here and here. Enjoy!