I woke up at 4.30am on Friday 9th October because of a storm, there was a little bit of water coming in from under the balcony doors as the wind blew the rain in that direction. The bathroom window was not watertight and so a puddle was forming as the rain pelted against the glass. I checked my messages from Captain Caveman to find he’d not got on the train to Hanoi until 1am! I wouldn’t have been too happy with that when the train was due to leave at 7.40pm but at least he could drink beers while he sat in the train station. I couldn’t go back to sleep so I got up and did some Vietnamese practice.  The cleaners came in early, mopping up, taking the wet towels away and generally making sure all was ok. I didn’t go to physio as it was a bit stormy still and I had an apple for breakfast. At lunch time I had grapes and peanut M&Ms and we popped another bottle of fizz in the fridge for later. That afternoon I saw various posts on Facebook showing that some people in Phong Nha had muddy flood water in their homes and some had no electricity. Further away some towns were having some really bad storms and it looked like the flood season had started. I watched Love on the Spectrum on Netflix which was brilliant.  I finally had a message from Captain Caveman that he had arrived in Hanoi, 10 hours later than planned. That evening I had falafel, yoghurt dip, red pepper and red cabbage for dinner – it went well with half a bottle of Lindeman’s each. The wind was really getting stronger and I wondered if I would be able to get to sleep, this would be my first experience of the wet season here in Vietnam.

Saturday 10th October the world reached over 37 million reported cases of Corona virus and the rain here was heavy. Having not slept much I was up early and the cleaners were in again, mopping and ringing out towels. Veronika’s room was the worst and the shared sitting area between the bedrooms was a big puddle. Of course Veronika was able to slosh through all the water but I was hesitant due to my leg as I didn’t want to slip – the trusty shower shoes were a big help. Water had leaked on to the staircase too making it a bit slippy and tricky for me to get to and from the kitchen. When I got downstairs Hien had brought us treats from the bakery in Dong Hoi and they looked delicious. I had a chocolate and custard one for breakfast even though it probably had gluten in but I was fine after it!  She tried to warn us the weather was going to get bad and to stay indoors. Photos and videos were being posted on Facebook showing bad floods in Hue, Danang and Hoi An – a few hours south of us. For lunch I had some hummus and veggies and I did an interview for a Turkish Facebook page. For the evening there was a banquet dinner on at Phong Nha Farmstay which we decided to go to. We shared a bottle of our favourite fizz by the fire, the first open fire of the year, and it felt all cosy and festive. The buffet was fantastic and I really enjoyed it, by the time we had finished we were stuffed and needing our beds. 

I was awake by 4.30am on Sunday 11th October and because it was still rainy out I stayed in again. By 10am I hade made popcorn, impressed myself by carrying  laundry down the stairs and treated myself to a red dragon fruit and an earl grey tea. Although it was still raining we were ok and photos from other provinces were gradually showing more flood situations. Phong Nha Farmstay decided to do a campfire stew instead of a Sunday lunch but I didn’t fancy going out in the rain so had a healthy dinner of hummus and veggies with a tortilla and a rice cracker. I wasn’t feeling too well and decided not to bother with any alcohol! The news in Vietnam now showed the number of dead and missing due to floods or landslides and it was many more than affected by the Corona virus in this country!

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