Well, it wasn’t the best of days on the road, but it had is upsides. We had some moments of beauty as we passed a bit of farmland on the way out of Buon Ma Thuot, but the majority of the day was mostly dusty little towns where not much was going on except for psychotic truck drivers pushing us off of the road and kicking mud up into our faces. Fun times.
We did have a lot of fun racing up and down an abandoned US airstrip on our way from Buon Ma Thuot to Pleiku! This one of those things that we would have missed if it hadn’t been for a few bloggers that had mentioned it in their own motorbiking posts.
My bike gave up about an hour outside of Pleiku, so we stopped at a local mechanic where a game of charades and Google Translator helped us to relay the problem. I watched in horror as he completely disassembled my entire bike, thinking it would cost a fortune, but 50,000 Dong later it was all good! (Or so I thought…tomorrow would prove me very wrong.) He brought me the cause of the problem, a nail that was broken in two, which I’m pretty sure just came out of my bike’s innards and was never replaced with a new one. Oh well, off we went.
We finally made it to Pleiku after being spit on by teasers of rain all afternoon, and we managed to find a little restaurant just in time to escape the daily downpour. I sat in the open-air restaurant watching our bikes and belongings (thankfully covered in tarps) being pelted with rain while I picked at my dismal looking plate of sautéed spinach. Vegetarian life.
In a last minute decision to save a day, instead of staying the night in Pleiku as planned, we got on our bikes and kicked off towards Kon Tum.
Two hours of assaulting rain torpedoes and dusty roads later, we pulled into the charming little riverside town of Kon Tum. This might have been one of my favorite pitstops on our journey actually. Quaint little bars and restaurants lined the Dakbla riverside and our hotel, Thinh Vuong, was an absolute breath of fresh air.
We set out to find dinner down the street from our hotel and ended up at a local eatery whose little dogs and hilariously translated menus brought us endless entertainment. Seriously, look at these menu items! FISH EGGS WAREHOUSES. CHICKEN DISTURBANCE SECURITY TECHNOLOGY. DOOR. I can’t.
After dinner we made our way up the street to the well-known and beautiful Indochine Café for some beer and ice cream. We are the healthiest. The plethora of Vietnamese parents in the restaurant must have been pushing their children to practice their English because we had a lovely little stream of children coming up to our table to say “hello” and “my name is…” The whole restaurant said goodbye as we left, and we settled into our hotel to rest up for the long day of riding tomorrow would bring.