Sunday, 7 April 2013

Day 2: The first test...

For many of the H2H team Day 2 began with stretching on a running track close to our hotel or sampling Hoa Binh's local bakery and Banh Mi stalls.  The real wake-up call however, came around 15 minutes into the ride when we were all faced with a 700m climb up a winding mountain road over a stretch of just 2km.

All of a sudden the once dreaded Phu My bridge (which served as the main challenge for most of us throughout our group training rides) seemed more like a walk in the park, but the nature of the challenge only added to the sense of accomplishment once the last of the group made it to the top.

For the remainder of the day we were spoiled by the beautiful countryside and smiling faces on the roadside en route to Vu Ban.

For me, the highlight was bumping into the cheeky chappy below on a mountainside passage.

Walking to his neighbouring village to visit his grandchildren, he couldn't get over the sight of a group of strange westerners cycling past.  We stopped for a quick chat and on parting gave him some change for the rice-wine fund.  Judging by the smile on his face, we made his day too.

Words: Rory

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