Monday, 4 April 2016

Day 1 of our Cycling trip from Hanoi to Cho Ben (86 km)

April 3, 2016,

Today I woke up excited, nervous and anxious as well as happy all at the same time because today is the day that I will begin my 2002 km journey from Hanoi to HCMC with my H2H team. I first found out about H2H through google and then working at ILA I met three now former teachers of ILA who had done the trip themselves. Seeing that I was so hesitant about doing the trip after living in Vietnam for seven (7) months now I wasn't quite keen on cycling in Vietnam's heat but they convinced me otherwise and shared and showed me all of their amazing pictures and stories. So here I am on this wet, drizzly and humid morning about to embark on an adventure of a lifetime with the ten most amazing people I have met. As we head to the Ly Thai To statue across from Hoan Kiem Lake I feel the butterflies in my stomach.

We begin our team meeting with our amazing captain Kate and Laurel begins the team warm up as we are being filmed by VTV who wanted to tell our story to the people of Vietnam. It was the first time this year that H2H team members were interviewed and it was quite exciting as the word is being spread all over Vietnam about H2H and what it stands for. After the interviews we say goodbye to those who came out to support us. I became a little emotional as I saw Davide say goodbye to his friends and looking around knowing that what was to come - scary and amazing all wrapped into one!

The ride in the beginning was quite bumpy leaving Hanoi, I kept making such rookie mistakes and almost taking out two of my H2H teammates but I got my head screwed back on correctly understanding that there was nothing to fear because we were doing this together. The ride out of Hanoi was bleak, humid and grey but feeling that nice cold wind was great and I couldn't ask for anything better. The farther and farther behind we left Hanoi the more we were beginning to see Vietnam's beauty as well as fresh air because living in Saigon you to tend forget what fresh air smells like! We stopped for a break and talked about the ride and after drinking ice cold beverages we got back on our bikes heading to our first Cho Ben which was 86 km away. I stopped along the way to take pictures admiring the beauty of Vietnam and realizing what was to come. My team and I stopped for lunch and checked into a hotel overlooking the lake. Once we showered and washed our clothes we all went out to eat and being that there are three vegetarians on the ride our fearless leader Kate, Davide and I we were able to eat a delicious bowl of pho with vegetables as well as fried tofu and steamed tofu. It was unbelievably delicious and exactly what we all needed.

Afterwards, our team Captain Kate held a team meeting and discussed what was to come tomorrow as well as what a great day our first day was. Matt who was the winner of Mr. Sexy Time the night before passed the trophy to our leader Kate for being an amazing person and taking charge of this year's H2H ride. We are all grateful to have such a great leader.

Now for our first culture night we played heads up and it was so much fun because we were trying to beat each others score but alas we were all tied. We then ended the night ready for a good night's rest for tomorrow's journey. This was an amazing first day and I cannot wait to continue on this adventure!

Good Night and xoxoxo,


  1. Stunning pics! Nice start of the ride, thanks for sharing!

  2. Lovely pics and details Georgina - great to follow your adventures from the comfort of our sofa! Enjoy :-)
    Chris Rolls