Departure – on the road in Vietnam, blog spot 1
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Departure – on the road in Vietnam, blog spot 1

I left Australia on Saturday to headlines that Julia Gillard has restored the public’s voting confidence in the Labor Party with an immediate change in the polls. It all seemed rather unlikely given the conversations I’ve had the last few days. Even enroute to the airport one man said, “Good time to leave I reckon”. And another – “I didn’t like Rudd but that’s not the way to do it, it’s a knife in the back”. And another – “Can’t believe we woke up yesterday with a new Prime Minister, doesn’t seem right”.
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/>Anyway I’m no political commentator, and won’t start here, it just seemed strange to be leaving a day after Julia Gillard became our Prime Minister – I haven’t quite got used to it.
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/>But leave I have, for Ho Chi Minh City. I’ll be here for about a week, then renting a motorcycle to travel north to Hanoi over the weeks following. If you bare with my intermittent reports, I hope to give you some insights into life on the road, particularly from the back of a bike in a land in which 2-stroke seems king.
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/>On the way from the airport I got reacquainted with these bikes – swarming like bees in and out of cars, a veritable moving army at a top speed of about 40km/hr.

I’ll be on one in a few days and while the two Malaysians in the back of the taxi gasped and swore at every near miss as we wound our way through to District 1, I found myself marvelling at the skill of the drivers of both bikes and cars alike and keen to soon be underway to Hanoi.
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This blog is part of a series on Vietnam detailing my overland journey via a Honda Dream motorbike from Ho Chi Minh City to Hanoi. To catch up on previous posts visit my page. Enjoy.