We set off pretty early for the Royal Citadel in Hue because we were due to board another overnight train fairly early on in the afternoon. When we arrived, we realised we probably should have tried to organise a guide because as we walked around the grounds, we were taking pictures but not really knowing what we were taking pictures of. I mean, sure there were a few plaques, but the writing had faded since they’d been exposed to the elements and there wasn’t really a set route around the site. One good thing was that we’d organised a taxi from the hotel and because 4 of us shared it, it was super-cheap.
We headed back to the hotel and frequented the same restaurant as the night before for some takeaway food to eat on the train. Loyalty counts for a lot in this part of the world – we got a 20% discount! The trip to the station was like 10 minutes, tops, when we arrived, we were told that the train had been delayed by three hours. That meant we could have actually one out for dinner! But no, we just camped out at the station, just in case this train was miraculously going to turn up earlier than advertised. Some people were understandably a little miffed because three hours in a fairly uncomfortable location where there was nothing to do seemed like a ridiculous waste of time, but I was kind of glad. It meant I could catch up on some GoPro footage from one of the lads, I could write up a little more of my trip that I’d been neglecting… I was running about a week late by this point! The other bonus was the time that we were due to arrive in Hanoi had also been delayed from 4:00-4:30am to 7:30-8:00am. That’s a win in my book for sure! We also played some games, got drunk on cheap cans of beer, and tried to have a bit of a sleep in the waiting room.
When we finally boarded the train, we had loads of beer kicking around, and I found myself in one of the cabins with around 8 or 9 of the others playing flip cup and ring of fire (King’s cup for the Aussie’s and Canadians amongst you…). Hilarity ensued on the “Never have I ever” round, when one of the lads just could not comprehend the rules! Basically, we all started with 3 fingers in the air and went round the table stating “never have I ever…” and the first to lose all three fingers had to drink. He was just like “well, why do I only have two fingers when these guys have 3 and she has only one…?” We got some more beer down him and moved on, bless him!
People started dropping off to their own cabins and I finally called it a night at 1am and headed back to my cabin to sleep. I was looking forward to the Hanoi music wake-up call in the morning, but alas, it never sounded. Or maybe I just slept through it.