Ivan, Jennifer and I woke early on November 6, 2008. We were taking a bus from Dali to Kunming, China. We had breakfast and then we walked to town. We went to the travel agency. It turned out that the 9:10 am bus was broken. The next bus would leave at 10:30 am. Ivan wanted to leave as soon as possible. There was another travel agency next door. There was a bus leaving at 9:40 am through the new travel agency. Ivan got the money back. Then, he booked new tickets through the travel agency next door. We had to walk a few minutes to a minivan. We were driven to the bus station. We climbed aboard. It was filled with Chinese people. The bus ride was going to be a 5 hour ride. Jennifer slept for a few hours. Ivan was watching videos on the laptop. He also played some Nintendo DS. Jennifer finished The Lifeguard book. She really enjoyed it. At one point, we stopped at a repair place. The bus had a low tire. We walked across to the food place. Ivan got some tofu, but it was too spicy. I had banana and crackers. Ivan and Jennifer got corn on the cob. We went back on the bus. The bus arrived in Kunming and we hit some traffic. It was around 4 pm. We finally made it to the drop off point. We got into a cab and reached the hostel.
We checked in at The Hump Hostel. It’s listed in Lonely Planet as being right by bars and discos. We walked around trying to find a place to eat. Unfortunately, there were no places that had an English menu. We came back to the hostel. We had dinner at their cafe which is called Traveller Cafe. Jennifer had a beef burger. She asked for no tomato and mustard. It came with a tomato on it. I think the kitchen staff may be dumb. Ivan enjoyed his vegetarian pizza. I had a banana salad. We wanted to check out the bars.
There’s a bar right by the hostel with a Captain Morgan statue. We walked inside all the bars, but they were empty. It was really early though. One bar had a movie theme. It had a really Asian looking Keanu Reeves as Neo in The Matrix.
We checked out this bar. The men were dressed as cowboys just standing around waiting to serve people. When you walked by one of the men, he’d put a fist over his heart and say something in a different language. We passed by another one but he said What’s up? Jennifer thought was rather funny. The bars only served beers and liquor. Ivan and Jennifer wanted mixed drinks. So, we headed back to the hostel. The Traveller Cafe serves drinks. Ivan ordered a Tsing Tao and a banana juice for me. I wanted a banana daiquirri, but a young monkey can only dream. Jennifer had a Tequila Sunrise. Ivan tasted her drink and said it wasn’t strong enough. The bartender added more tequila. Jennifer thought it tasted like a really watered down drink. Poor Jennifer.. she’s not having any luck at the Traveller Cafe.
Ivan and Jennifer played pool. We went back to the room to relax and then we went to bed. There is a lot of noise coming from the discos and bars. Jennifer and I popped in our earplugs.
Ivan, Jennifer and I woke up early on Friday, November 7, 2008. We took a taxi to the Vietnam Consulate General. Ivan and Jennifer needed to get their Vietnam visas. They got same day service so we could leave by bus in the evening. We had breakfast at the Traveller Cafe. Then, we checked out of The Hump hostel. The hostel turned out to be ok, not very personal. The kitchen and bar staff weren’t very good. We put our luggage in the storage area. We chilled on the terrace. We walked around Kunming for a short while.
Next, we went to pick up our Vietnam visas. We came back and had a snack at the Traveller Cafe. Then, we took a taxi to the bus station. It took awhile trying to find the sleeper bus to Hekou. Ivan kept asking around. The signs are in Chinese only. Our bus ride was going to be 11 hours long. A lady was in one of our beds. She had a back bed which is part of 5 beds. Ivan said he’d switch with the lady. The beds are really small. Jennifer slept by Ivan as well. It was really dark back there. The bad thing was the two men near us were snoring. It’s hard to sleep on the bus. Earplugs are essential. The ride is bumpy and you fly into the air about a foot high every so often. It’s nice that the bus stops every 2 hours or so. We all got some sleep, but I don’t think it was very good sleep.