This morning we rose from our comfortable (and soft!!) beds by the sea to face our longest challenge yet: 99km down and across the country, on flat (read boring) terrain. These many miles were split as follows: 63 km down Highway 1- a long and endless stretch of flatness, with the occasional railtrack and rusty-propaganda-poster-adorned town. Fun for the first 20 km perhaps. However, 60 kilometres of vehicles completely failing to understand the opposing-lane system (you know, some cars drive one way, some go the other way, you try to avoid the crash with the cyclist rather than cause it...) and many cows later, we were all looking for new excitement.
A stop for lunch in Dien Chau brought new hope and kebabs a-plenty and as we set off for the remaining 36km stretch of our day, full on across the width of the WHOLE country (virtually), we felt a surge of energy lead us on our way. We had no idea what to expect and although the scenery was much the same, it was interspersed with a nice little mountain range, lake and conifers, as well as more cows ready to run Justene (amongst others) over. Fun times.
We cycled into Do Luong in plenty of time and to the largest gathering of staring schoolchildren yet and Ruth the genius found us a spacious hotel in which to crash for the night. Tomorrow, we are told, will be so hard up the mountains that we will be strongly encouraged to find Jesus. After today though, how hard can 60 km be? [she smiles naively...]