Happy New year from Quan Hao Vietnam!
我在越南 Quan Hao祝大家新年快乐！
Before leaving Xam Neua I had to pick up the last shipment of equipment and I can't believe we received all six! There has been the obvious challenges with the language and getting people to understand what exactly we are doing out here...but I got to give a shout out to my guy at the Pak Mong bus station who came through for us...Sometimes you just need a little faith and I am so grateful for all the great people who have helped us along this epic journey..
在离开Xam Neua前我必须要去取最后一次装备，令我不敢相信的是他们居然把全部的6车货一起寄到了这里！显然语言问题在这里是个巨大的挑战，很难跟他们讲清楚我们在干什么，但是我还是要感谢Pak Mongolia车站的伙计们，他们给了我巨大支持，有时候你只需要相互信任，我要感谢所有帮助我们完成这段旅程的人们！
The trailer was loaded to full capacity...Locals riding by on scooters take a double glance to see what exactly I am doing...I often have battles with truck drivers to see who will take the crown at the top of the hill and so far my record is pretty good. I made stops at many schools over the past two days...At times I had to perform a little off-roading to meet these energetic kids, but it's not very often they receive visitors in these parts of Laos...The schools out here don't have any equipment and lack basic resources...I went to a secondary school yesterday and I met a lady who told me the kids are keen to be active and enjoy sport, but don't have any funding to purchase the equipment...We have been giving schools our contact information along the way if we have met people that can speak English. My hope is that we can continue to stay connected with these schools so we can continue to provide support...
The riding towards the border has been spectacular...I am surrounded by limestone mountains, lush vegetation and it's been amazing to witness the everyday life of the people living in the villages...Compared to our standards, the people live tough lifestyles....but all I see are smiles and they have been so grateful if you take the time to say hello...Cycling through these remote areas has been very special...It's amazing to be able to provide people with a gift, but I must say the experience I have received during this journey is something special I will hold with me for the rest of my life...
Yesterday, I crossed the border and waved goodbye to Laos...This country has survived to remain in it's natural state...but it's the people that have made this a unique and amazing place...I have made my way to a town called Quan Hao in Vietnam and the road getting here is similar to a mountain bike trail...haha. Last night was difficult to find accommodation and almost found myself bunking up with three Vietnamese gentlemen in a hut, until I finally understood there is a town 3 km away...I want to wish everyone a happy new year and I hope 2014 brings everyone happiness and of course adventure...
Much love from Vietnam,