With just a couple of days left until my visa expired and my passport at Dong Hoi immigration, I double checked flights and PCR test logistics, on Monday 7th June. Captain Caveman was not worried at all and had every faith in the immigration department agreeing to give me another stamp – I hoped he was correct but I didn’t share his confidence. While he headed over to Phong Nha at 7am I had a cheeky lay-in and then had orange juice, a banana and some gluten free biscuits for breakfast. There were a few little sparrows who were nesting in our roof and had decided to destroy some insulation foam and chuck it in the pool and on the balcony – I watched them drink from the pool. It just so happened that there were no flights out on the 9th but one on the 10th so this then lead me to checking out how much overstay fees I would get charged and if the spare dollars Captain Caveman had given me would cover it, if needed. Because of all the faffing about required I would probably have to leave Phong Nha on the Thursday or Friday and then fly from Saigon, which was also 1 week in to a lockdown because of the rise in Corona cases there, but that was another issue I didn’t need to worry about, just yet!
Captain Caveman called at the Lake House to collect bread on his way home and then made me a bacon sandwich for my second breakfast/first lunch. I received a message asking for the payment for the visa extension which was excellent news and meant that I should be getting the visa extension stamp on the 9th. I refused to get too over-excited until I at least saw a photo of it but Captain Caveman paid the money and assumed that was the end of that and maybe I would finally stop mentioning it!!! The weather was nice and cloudy so after a couple of (not quite) celebratory cold ones and some homemade Baba Ganoush we had time in the pool. Our day finished with a rather tasty dinner made by Captain Caveman; chicken, pumpkin, garlic, green beans and salad and all seemed to be going well.
At 6am on Tuesday 8th June the loudspeaker was back with a vengeance and playing incredibly loud music. Captain Caveman went off to Oxalis, I had a banana sandwich and some gluten free cake for breakfast and watched a bit of Netflix. Captain Caveman returned having paid 1.6 million vnd (£50) for our half of the electricity, which was a big bill due to the pool pump and use of Aircon this last month. He also had a few updates for me; the old Easy Tiger building was reopening as a pool table place, Phuong from Little Leaf was extending his homestay, little Ha from Bamboo Cafe was enjoying being a mom to her second kid, and (most importantly) positive changes to the Son Doong schedule were afoot. I had crisps and cider for lunch and a bit of swimming was had before Captain Caveman had to leave for the Oxalis 10th anniversary party, at Oxalis Home. I created a Facebook event for a night out tomorrow at the Lake House which would either be for me to celebrate another month here, or my impromptu leaving do. I made myself a prawn and rice noodle dish for dinner and Captain Caveman managed to come home drunk from his Oxalis party on his bicycle with a flashing red light tied to his backside because he has no backlight on the bike itself!