Having been awake most of the night due to the storm, I woke up to nice weather on Wednesday 13th July.
Our mate, Stu, had invited me over to his place for lunch with Tatas today and I was looking forward to that. Because their house is a bit far for me to walk, and is slightly too far to cycle in hot sun, Stu arranged for me to get picked up. Jack, Stu’s son, came to collect me on his motorbike and I was a bit apprehensive at first. He’s very experienced in riding motorbikes solo, despite only being 16, but I wasn’t sure if he’d taken a (heavy) passenger like me before. I have my own crash helmet so I was ok and he went fairly slowly through the countryside lanes. Tatas didn’t know the way so she followed from my place, which meant I could have had a lift with her if I’d known.
Stu’s home is a fab 4 bedroom house with a large pool and open plan living/dining/kitchen area. It has plenty of space and great bathrooms – they even have sunken baths! It’s in the Cu Nam area which is higher up than where we are, in Khuong Ha, so is a safe place, even in flood season. Did I mention that it is currently up for sale and at a great price too? If anyone is in the market for a property near to Phong Nha and Dong Hoi they could get an amazing property at the Belafonte, as it’s nicknamed.
It was the first time that Tatas had been for a visit as she had been busy with work so it was good to see her on her day off. We were given beers with ice as we sat down at the huge kitchen table to catch up on what the boys had been up to.
We ordered East Hill chicken for lunch, which was fantastic, chatted a bit more and drank a few beers. Stu is not normally a drinker these days but he joined us for a couple of cold ones on this hot day. Tatas had forgotten her swimmers but that didn’t stop her jumping off of the plunge pool edge, in to the big swimming pool below, in denim shorts. I got in to the plunge pool to cool off as it was so hot and humid again. Tatas kindly took some photos of us in the pool as the clouds started to roll in a bit more. When she left, as she had a briefing that night, I had a lift back to mine with her. We had just got back in time when another storm came and we were fortunate to have left when we did. It had been a fun day out, with lots of laughs, and we hoped to meet up again when Captain Caveman and Tatas had days off at the same time.
For dinner I had pasta with Stilton cheese, I watched the rain and had yet another early night.

Pool photos by Tatas

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