A birthday, a waterfall and another train.

Despite the drunken antics of the night before, we woke at a reasonable hour and a bunch of us had organised a trip to Ba Ho waterfall which was a little out of town. Most people were sensible and put their trainers on, but for some unknown reason, I thought it would be a good idea to go in flip flops. That I’d bought just that morning. Don’t ask. The lady who had organised the transport for us assured me that flip flops were fine – she did it all the time in hers, and even though the room was just up the stairs, time was short and so I didn’t change my shoes.

The climb was fine at the beginning, but it got quite steep and rocky quite quickly. We were told to follow the red arrows, which we didn’t see for a long time. Hoping we were going in the right direction, we kept going, and then we saw the arrows. Faded paint on rocks. Well, at least that meant people had been doing this for years! Despite the tour lady’s protests, it was time to ditch the flip flops and go at it like a local – barefoot and without fear. We made it to the top without too much of a problem. There was a little bit where you had to wade through running water and the boys were very good, helping us across as there was nothing to hold on to!

Once at the top it was a case of admiring the beautiful and peaceful area and then looking for the best point to jump down into the water. I was a little hesitant here. The main drop was pretty high, maybe 15ft. There was another point you could jump off, and that wasn’t quite as bad, but I knew I only wanted to do it once, so I went for it. I was so conscious of not jumping far enough, that I ended up leaning backwards slightly and landing on the small of my back/top of my butt. Oh my goodness did it freaking hurt??! On the plus side, the adrenaline from the jump made the water feel a lovely soothing temperature, and I spent more time in the water than one of the other girls who decided to tip toe into the shallows, shivering as she went! I did kind of have to get out when the fish started nibbling though. It was a little too tickly for me! The birthday boy and a couple of the others went off exploring further up in the rocks, finding a pretty treacherous path but getting some really cool GoPro footage. image

We grabbed some lunch, not parting with more than a few thousand dong and some of us waterfall climbers opted for a massage. It was a case of stepping outside the restaurant and doing an eenie-meenie-minie-mo. We settled on a very clean looking place over the road with lime green massage chairs visible through the window. They were advertising a full body massage for about $6. The place was run by a French-sounding Vietnamese guy with perfect English, despite his lilting French accent. He gave us a small cup of green tea each and we knew that we had made the right decision. I’ve never been a tea drinker, but this stuff was good. It felt healthy!

We traipsed up the stairs in these cute little flip flops they provided for us and each chose a bed. The smell of the oil, combined with the fact that there was a face-hole in the bed, coupled with the way my masseuse lady just placed her hands on my back, with zero pressure and it cracked from the base of my neck and down my spine told me this was going to be $6 and one hour very well spent. The guy who was on the bed next to mine had masseur who was quite talkative and wanting a lot of reassurance “Is okay? Too hard?” etc. Turns out, he was blind and the guy was severely ticklish, so rather than try to explain his ticklishness to a blind man in a room that would disturb all of us, he was just tensing and trying not to giggle!

We’d paid for a late checkout, so in our beautifully relaxed state, headed back to the hotel to shower, picked up some takeaway food for the evening’s train ride and packed everything up for our next stop – Hoi An. The train journey was not as cold as the first one, and we spent the time playing cards, drinking rum and coke out of a bottle and enjoying each other’s company. I think it was around this point that I knew I was making friends for life.


Mud baths and late night drunken antics in Nha Traaaaaaaaaang!

The sleeper train arrived in Nha Trang at an obscene time in the morning, with a hearty chorus of high pitched music screaming from the speakers to alert us to our destination. No joke, the only words to the song were “Nha Trang, Nha Trang, Nha Traaaaaaang!”. Or maybe I was just too sleepy to register any other lyrics!

We dumped our bags at the hotel as we wouldn’t be able to check in until much later on in the day, and set out for the beach. At 5am, there were a fairly large group of people practicing Tai Chi on the beachfront which was really nice to see. As we continued our 30-day journey northwards through Vietnam, we noticed the weather getting cooler, so we decided a nice cup of coffee was in order. This place had a real coffee machine. With fresh milk. It was like a dream! As we sat there with our breakfast, we checked out the place we were due to visit for the morning – Thap Ba hot springs and mud baths. Good reviews on TripAdvisor and a pretty good article in a magazine we found lying around the coffee shop meant that we were all looking forward to a morning of relaxation after a slightly dodgy night’s sleep on the train.

We hopped into the minivan, but as usual, there wasn’t quite enough space for us all, so smaller people were asked to sit up front with the driver. And his cute chubby little kid! At first he was so shy, and wouldn’t sit on my lap, even though that was the only place for him! After rolling into the gear stick a couple of times, I picked him up and plonked him on one knee and of course we snapped a picture!


We spent time getting covered in mud, which was a little runnier than I thought it would have been, massaging into our hair, because apparently it’s great for pores and follicles, too! Then after drying out for a while in the sun like basking crocodiles, and washing the mud off, we submerged ourselves in the cool water of one of the mineral pools. There was a cute little area with a waterfall and some kind of water jet walls that shot water out at you. Heaven forbid if you were ticklish, because there were some interesting screams coming from that part of the park! We got some lunch and a few drinks there by the pool, I didn’t spot any of the advertised hot springs, but it was a great morning in any case!

Back at the hotel, we finally got to check in, and the shower was a really good one! Yes, it was still a wet room, not a shower curtain in sight, but the force of the water was definitely enough to wash the last bits of mud from my hair. That was after we managed to get in to the bathroom, which had a tendency to lock itself from the inside with no one in it! My roommate tried in vain to open the door from the outside, completely destroying my library card in the process (which would have expired by the time I get back to the UK anyway, so what the hell), so we asked reception to help us out. This lady turns up with a fairly dainty looking screwdriver, shoves it into the doorframe, but has no joy. This handyman dude turns up with a screwdriver that looked like it meant business, and a few minutes of thumping later – SUCCESS! He closed the door, bowed in a way that only SE Asians in the hospitality industry  do, left us to it, but the door had only gone and got stuck again! The second time he opened it, we decided that we would only shut the door if one of us was actually IN the bathroom! Well, I guess we learned one thing from this experience… neither of us would be any good at robbing a bank.

That evening, we decided we were going to celebrate one of the guy’s birthdays. It was the first of three within our month of travelling together. His actual birthday was the 11th Jan, which was the following day, but we were due to head on up to Hoi An on the train overnight, so we saw in his birthday in true drunken style! We went to this beautiful looking restaurant with tons of lanterns lighting up the place, and it was literally down the road from the hotel.

imageShame the service was terrible, the food wasn’t great, it was a little on the expensive side and it took us over an hour to pay the bill. We also had a lovely girl on the trip who has a severe allergy to seafood. She explicitly ordered a chicken dish, specified at least four times that there was to be no fish sauce and no seafood in it. The manager took our order, promised all would be fine, and you guessed it, the dish was full of fish sauce. Luckily, she didn’t have any as she could smell it a mile off, sent it back to the kitchen and waited a significant amount of time before another dish appeared. This dish was made of solely chicken bones. The vegetables that were in the original dish had disappeared and all that was on the plate was bits of chicken carcass. Don’t get me wrong, I’m of Indian heritage and we eat chicken off the bone all the time – it tastes better, it is more tender, yeah it can be a bit of a bother if you’re not used to it, and you have to get your hands dirty, but it’s good. This was not good: there was no meat on the bones and no taste, it was almost as if the bones had been used to give flavour to other dishes and these were literally the leftovers that you wouldn’t even give to your dog. Needless to say, the overall experience was quite frightful, made ever so slightly worse when one of the girls spotted a rat running along a wall. Bless her though, she kept it to herself until we were clear of that place!

The rest of the evening was pretty awesome though. We went to “Why Not?” bar, received a watered down flavoured vodka shot on arrival and proceeded to celebrate the night away, drinking buckets of cocktails, playing pool and foosball, and dancing until the early hours to an eclectic music taste ranging from late 90’s Oasis to current David Guetta and other European electro-dance and more. My roommate and I headed off, navigating the streets pretty well and finally locating our hotel which was gated almost shut as it was pretty late and tumbled into bed after a really great day.

Cu Chi Tunnels and boobs.

We visited the Cu Chi Tunnels, which were absolutely fascinating. Our local tour guide was a fairly young guy, but no less knowledgeable than any of the other guides that we had met. He took us around the site, explaining the tunnel network, the ventilation system, the  lethal booby traps set for the US soldiers and he was ready to answer questions at any time.

The Cu Chi Tunnels are a massive labyrinth of increasing complexity of connecting underground living spaces that were developed by the Viet Cong during the later years of the war effort. The tunnels were unbelievable small, barely accommodating the tiny Vietnamese soldiers, let alone any US or French who dared enter.

We had the opportunity to get into one of these tunnel openings that was a rectangular hole in the ground, maybe just over one ft. across and just less than a ft. wide and approximately four ft. deep. The cover was made from wood, and you littered it with leaves as camouflage and literally disappeared from sight. As soon as I got into the tunnel opening, I knew I would have problems getting out. Let me paint you a picture, I’m just over five ft. tall myself with zero upper body strength and it was so embarrassing attempting to lift myself out. One of the lads from our group got behind me and helped me out by grabbing me by the boobs. Cheers hun! Worse than that? It was all captured on GoPro. Jeez.

The tour continued with a recreation of some of the tunnels for tourists to actually go into. There were stairs in and out of these tunnels, so I was happy enough to go have a look. These tunnels had been widened and heightened for western tourists, but still a few people sat out due to claustrophobia and there were exits at points where we were warned the tunnels would get smaller. There were three levels and each did get progressively smaller. I managed to get halfway before I decided that the increasing heat levels plus lack of fresh air and light was a bit too much for me, so I ducked out, but respect to a lot of the guys especially, who were pretty tall who made it, crawling through the last stretch.

One of the cleverest parts of the tour was the working kitchen. Naturally, cooking will generate steam and very much give away the location of people underground, so the tunnels incorporated an extended chimney that released the steam up to 20ft. away. When it comes to bombing, 20ft can mean the difference between life and death.

Unfortunately, the complexity of the Cu Chi tunnels running under Saigon and connecting to the river were probably the primary reason that (bio-)chemical were used in the US war effort. The elimination of the jungle/wilderness infrastructure that the Viet Cong were using was completely eradicated, making it near impossible to live off the land and continue their underground resistance.

Our tour of the tunnels finished with a taste of taro chips and green tea just before lunchtime; we thanked our guide and headed back to the main city in order to locate some decent grub. A bunch of us decided to hit the Street Food Market as we’d skipped over it the evening before in order to eat at a local seafood restaurant. This place was pretty amazing during the day – there was a brilliant mural painted on the wall, so what did I do…? You really have to think about it?


IMG_0914We were due to board our first sleeper train that evening, so the afternoon was spent exploring the city, or catching up with friends and family back home and grabbing some food prior to boarding the train. The experience was not as bad as we’d been lead to believe, but it was incredibly cold. They cranked the air conditioning up to what felt like minus figures! I took the top bunk in our little cabin of four, which was even worse because that’s where the A/C unit was blasting the cold air from. For the first time on the trip I slept in my hoodie. With the hood up. We had been provided with a fleecey blanket, but it didn’t look particularly clean. Good thing a lot of us had brought sleeping bag liners or our own sheets. I’d brought a single duvet cover and pillowcase. It was a pretty good trick as it doesn’t take up too much space and provides a nice bit of padding inside your suitcase too. Win-win!

Ho Chi Minh City or Saigon or Motorcycleland

Warning: this post contains some explicit descriptions of articles/exhibitions at the War Remnants Museum that some people may find upsetting. There are no graphic photographs.

Renamed Ho Chi Minh City in 1976, this city used to be called Saigon and is still referred to as Saigon in an unofficial capacity. One of the most common beers in the area is actually named Saigon, and whilst I wasn’t a fan of the standard bottle, Saigon Special was much nicer (and double the price, too! Though I’m not really complaining – beer in SE Asia is quite often cheaper than water, and forking out $2 for a bottle instead of $1 was not going to break the bank…). We were told that there are around 95 million people in Vietnam, and around 45 million registered motorbikes. They were everywhere. And so loud. Honking for no reason at all.image


Anyway, on arrival, we went to a Pho restaurant. So many people within our group had been itching to try real Vietnamese Pho and not a single person was disappointed. We were directed upstairs where there was much more seating, and it kind of reminded me of the upstairs of McDonalds or Burger King restaurants in the late 90’s, early 2000’s where I grew up in the UK. Maybe it was the décor that made me think of that era. The walls were plastered with blown-up newspaper articles from when President of the US at the time, Bill Clinton visited that very restaurant on the 25th Anniversary of the end of the Vietnamese war.

The place was really great though – clean, friendly staff, some of the best service we’d had to date on the trip, and the noodle soup was pretty awesome. I went for the veggie option and there were some interesting vegetables floating around. Okra made an appearance, there was something that could have been turnip or swede. There was definitely some pumpkin going on, naturally there was enough bok choy to make up your five-a-day all on its own, plus a super crispy fried omelette. After lunch, we headed out into the city, trying to see as much as possible, as our time, as ever, was limited in this city.

imageWe visited the Notre Dame Cathedral which did actually look very similar to its namesake in Paris. The due to the French invasion, there is still a lot of French influence around Vietnam and also other areas of Indochina. We didn’t go in, but it looked pretty from the outside. It had gotten to the point in the trip where a lot of people had bought and written postcards but not had an opportunity to put them in the mail. It seemed silly to be in the same city as the biggest post office in all of Indochina and not make use of it, so one of the guys and I gathered the group’s postcards and we headed off to go see this place. I bought a couple of postcards and wrote them out in the giant atrium of the post office; one for my parents and one for my grandparents, as it was my Grandad’s 79th birthday the day before. We double and tripled checked the postage on all of the postcards and got on our way to the War Remnants Museum via interactive map and GPS. Oh man… the number of times GPS has saved my life on this trip is unbelievable!

The War Remnants Museum was a fascinating place. I could have spent hours there, but unfortunately, we’d been told you could get through it in an hour and so arrived with only 90 minutes until closing time. Of course the narrative throughout the exhibitions was heavily biased against the US and the French and the history got a little bit hazy for me in the middle, so I won’t attempt to explain the reasons behind the war. Some of the statistics though, could not be argued with. I have no doubt in my mind that those figures were accurate and ran shivers up my spine that had absolutely nothing to do with the air conditioning.

The museum was split into set exhibitions and the first that genuinely took my breath away was the room that was dedicated to colour photography of the war. We’re talking early 70’s when journalists went out to Vietnam and captured the horrors on paper and for the first time ever in technicolour. Although the imagery was devastating to see, there was one piece of text that stuck with me. I haven’t been able to find it again online, so I can’t credit it properly nor give you the exact wording, but the idea of this tiny extract was written from the point of a journalist based with some US soldiers. It was along the lines of: “And then, out of nowhere, these two young boys emerged from the rubble, along with a man who could have easily been their father. The soldier didn’t even blink as he shot them down, one boy falling against his brother, and finishing the man off with another shot”. In one respect, it was humane of the soldier to end the poor injured and emotionally scarred people’s lives, and the soldier was only carrying out his orders, but kids? What have children ever done to deserve being murdered in cold blood. Their only sin was to be born. There were preservation tanks with deformed embryos in it, there were countless images in the rooms. It was hard going, but I couldn’t bring myself to leave.

Another room was bathed in a sunset glow and its main focus was Agent Orange. Apparently, it takes only 85g of Agent Orange to eradicate greenery living across a city with a population of 1 million people. That is incredible, and it’s no wonder that the population of Vietnam crumbled during the years of the war, and the numbers are still not back up as the generations have suffered the after effects of the chemical weapons. Children born as late as 2005 with enlarged heads, bulging eyes, additional limbs and brain abnormalities. The photos were devastating and the captions even worse; most of the children passed away within a few days or weeks. Some of them live in agony every day.

We saw the famous picture of Napalm Girl. Ms Phuc is only in her early fifties now living in Canada, with her own family, educating people of the horrors of the war. She also has established the Kim Phuc Foundation in the States which supports child victims of war. She has found happiness in her life and there is some small relief in that.

We were ushered out of the museum at 5pm, and managed a very quick walk-through of the outdoor recreation of tiger cages which were used in American/French PoW camps that the Vietnamese created towards the end of the war with the intention of torturing soldiers. There were displays of instruments of torture and at the end of the exhibition, there was a massive guillotine. It must have been 12-15 foot high. I mean, there was no room for error here, and one small mercy was that it would have been a fast way to go. After months of torture, I imagine it was welcome to many prisoners.

In the evening, we caught up with the rest of the group and the atmosphere was a little more subdued than it had been. We visited the main town area of Ho Chi Minh City with the Street Food Market and had a couple of drinks. No one was really up for too much of a party because we had another war history day planned for the following day and wanted to be mentally prepared for it.

Another stamp for the passport – Vietnam

Oh, the bus ride was excruciatingly long. We tried playing games, sleeping, we attempted to write in journals/type things out on laptops/tablets, but the motion of the bus was too much for me. I managed to get a couple of hours sleep in though, which was good, and on one of the stops, we met this fellow:


I’d done something a little bit silly over the past couple of days… I’d been wearing my sandals in the sea. Not for long periods of time, but enough for the leather to be not very happy with me! They were brilliantly comfortable, I’d got them on a whim in Malaysia when I was there a few years ago, but alas, they were not of the highest quality. I could feel the soul of the left foot peeling away from the upper in the blistering heat, walking across the Vietnamese border! What can I say? The timing was just perfect! I made it past immigration and was sitting in the weird no-man’s land between countries waiting for my passport to be returned to me and I spied a bin. So I said my goodbyes and put my trainers on for the second leg of the walk!

After the amusements of the border crossing, we loaded our luggage onto yet another minibus, hopped on and got on our way. We stopped at a guesthouse for lunch and the owner was willing to exchange currency for Vietnamese dong. I had a bit of £GBP with me, and the rate he was giving was pretty good, so I got myself some local cash, stashing my Cambodian riel away to another part of my purse (I’d need it when I made it back to Siem Reap for the next part of my trip).


The food at this place was absolutely delicious. We were sitting on the top floor and the kitchen was literally at the end of the room. From where I was sitting, I could see the woman in the kitchen and it must have been seriously hot in there, but she knocked those dishes out in record time. We were due to go to a homestay in Can Tho in the evening, so I didn’t want to eat too much, and I’d had a bit of a weird stomach, so I took it easy at lunchtime.

When we got there, we chucked our things in the rooms we were to sleep in and headed back to the family room for dinner. We’d been warned that the homestay was not going to be particularly comfortable, but this couldn’t have been further from the truth. We had a little hut with two proper sized beds, mosquito nets and power points, plus lights and a fan. What more could you possibly ask for? A bathroom? Yup, there were two Western style loos just outside our little hut, with a shower head sticking out of the side of the wall, and a little sink. Perfect.

Dinner started with a demonstration of how to make traditional Vietnamese rice pancakes. The ingredients were gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan-friendly – rice flour, turmeric, spices and salt to taste and water. The batter was really quite runny, and the lady heated a tablespoon of oil in a wok until it was smoking hot, poured in enough batter to line the pan, wait until it gets crispy and then flipped it over. The fillings are where things start to get a little bit more interesting – there was a veggie option with beansprouts and another leafy green vegetable, but the standard version was pork mince with egg and beansprouts. and it was super tasty.

Unfortunately, as the evening wore on, I was feeling more and more ropey, so by the time it got to the feast of pumpkin soup, morning glory (I kid you not! It’s on so many menus, and its just like a green veg with a nice tender stem) enough rice to feed an army, noodle dishes with more pork and seafood, I stuck around for the rice pancake demo, ate a few vegetables, made my excuse and hit the hay. I felt awful because the family had obviously put in a lot of effort to the feast that was presented to us, but I just couldn’t face it.

I skipped the early morning trip to the floating markets but managed a superfast shower and we got on our way to Ho Chi Minh City.

Sihanoukville – Beautiful Bamboo Island

$20 all in for breakfast, a boat ride to a snorkelling bay for an hour, off to a secluded private beach on Bamboo Island for the afternoon, barbequed lunch and the boat ride back again. It really was a fantastic day and the best use of $20 I can think of.

Photo credit: Sarou Hong

Admittedly, snorkelling isn’t really for me. I was still a little sniffly from the constant change in temperatures on the A/C front, and trying to breathe only through your mouth is actually much more difficult than one would imagine! Teamed with the fact that I opted for a life jacket, not because I can’t swim, but more that I was being lazy, I lasted about 15 minutes and then headed back to the boat. A few people had some sea urchin issues and a couple of people got a little cut up on some of the sharper corals, but no major casualties and everyone loved the experience. The GoPro cameras came out again and there was some really great footage of fish and wannabe-merpeople!

You have no ideahow long it took me to frame this photo
The day was incredible – I cracked my mini speaker out at lunchtime and played some easy-listening Britpop, I sat and drew pictures in the sand, pretty much everyone caught the sun (of course in the group shot I look significantly darker than everyone else… the bane of Indian heritage), and I spent an obscenely long time trying to frame my little minion so it looked like he was playing volleyball! It eventually looked okay. Let me know what you think to my efforts…

When we got back to our side of the beach, I grabbed a shower, teased the curls back into my hair, nicked some cotton thread from one of the group who was sensible enough to bring a sewing kit on the trip, and threaded my eyebrows! Our lovely tour guide had a haircut and a couple of the guys had made an effort and actually had a shave! We looked awesome out at dinner at one of these tiny little spaces with kids playing in the back that was actually a restaurant, that served amazing food and incredibly strong cocktails. (Just as a side-note, the places that look like you could potentially contract some serious food poisoning are quite often the best restaurants you will ever eat at. Top tip… you’re welcome!) I ordered another piña colada, because it seemed like a wonderful thing to do. I subsequently ordered a can of sprite to water it down! No joke, the entire can made it into that drink! Towards the end it tasted a lot like fruit juice, but it worked for me!

A few people were feeling a teeny bit worse for wear after their vodka-bucket antics from the night before, but all in all it was a completely brilliant day, and I really didn’t want to leave Sihanoukville in the morning. Especially as I knew it was the border crossing into Vietnam and we were to spend 10-12-hours on the minibus.

Phnom Penh to Sihanoukville Seaside

Another fairly early start driving through capital city traffic saw the start of our journey to IMG_0828Sihanoukville – the first beach town of our itinerary. Once we got onto the highway, it was a pretty smooth journey, it wasn’t even a little bit bumpy at the back of the bus! We arrived just in time for lunch at a cute little beachside bar/eatery and I ordered the most delightful seafood fried rice served in a pineapple. I resisted ordering a piña colada and went for a coffee shake to perk myself up a bit. Everyone was feeling a little warm and I’m a tiny bit paranoid about sunstroke when I go to a beach. Don’t ask me why… just am.

I managed to buy a cute little hat from a beachside stall which I haggled down from $7 to $4! We also bought a volleyball, again, bartered down to $4! Turns out I am pants at volleyball. Picture the scene, a group of people on a beach passing the ball to each other perfecting different volleys. The ball comes in my direction, I flail madly, manage to hit it. Vertically. It falls with the help of gravity and bounced off my own head. I stayed far from the volleyball court after that embarrassing fail.

We chucked our stuff at the hotel, got into our swimmers and headed back to the beach. And then yes, I did indeed order myself a cocktail. And it was great. It was literally an afternoon lying on the beach, watching the waves and sipping piña coladas til the sun went down. Paradise. The water was good too. Not crazy salty, perfectly clear and just the right temperature. It did wonders for my hair! There’s a hairdresser in our group and he was like “Your hair is amazing, it’s just flowing down your back in perfect curls, no frizz. You’re a hairdresser’s dream!”. Bless him, I know I’m so lucky!

IMG_0831We met the most amazing kids on the beach. One 10-year-old in a bright yellow football kit was selling gypsy bracelets and hair braids. We managed to say no for such a long period of time, then she changed tack. She cornered one of the guys and challenged him to a game of rock paper scissors. He stakes were a $1 bracelet. First to 3 wins. If she won, you had a buy a bracelet, if she lost, she’d give you one for free. The game went on and this poor little girl lost. True to her word, she proceeded to ask which bracelet he wanted. Bless him, he didn’t even want one. I was sat right next to this, so he turns to me and asks if I want one. Naturally I said yes so he picked me out my first travel bracelet and being the good British tourist handed the kid a dollar bill. I still have it on my wrist, and it started my “bracelet per country” policy. Knowing that I was going to be travelling for a fairly long period of time, I didn’t want to buy stuff for the sake of buying stuff, so a small collection of gypsy bracelets worked for me.

We stayed out late and partied hard. It was great because the beachside shack that we’d adopted as our base had a bar, an awesome BBQ, lots of lights, they had an entire stretch of the beach to themselves and a heap of amplifiers for their sound system. The amusing thing was that they didn’t have enough power to keep all these things running at the same time, so the music and dance lights went out at least 3 times! Didn’t stop it from being a really cool night, with the occasional dip in the sea when it got a little too warm on the dancefloor. Drinks were flowing, and we stayed out until the early hours.