day one hundred and thirty-six: february 12, 2016: the long road from sapa to ha giang

After an early breakfast we hit the long road to Ha Giang. We passed many tea fields on our way and stopped to take some photos and smell the fresh tea leaves.

Tonight we stayed at a small homestay about 6 km outside of the city of Ha Giang. The homestay was a traditional Tay stilt home set amongst rice paddies.

After settling into the homestay, we went for a short walk up into the hills behind the small village. An old man approached Jonathan speaking in Vietnamese and when he told him he only spoke English, the old man didn't believe him. Quang told him Jonathan was a foreigner but the man insisted that Jonathan was Vietnamese. After much back and forth he insisted that we come with him to drink wine in his home up in the mountains. Not knowing where he would lead us, we declined his offer even though he was very insistent.

As the sun began to set, we walked about the rice paddies enjoying the serenity, peace, and quiet of the village.

Inside the home, the upstairs was a wide open area with only sheets separating the sleeping spaces and an area for a fire for heating and cooking. Meats were hung above the fire to dry.

With it being Tết, it was hard to decline "happy water", which is homemade corn wine, so we went ahead and drank with the owner, Mr. Doan, to cheers to a prosperous and good new year. 

After dinner, we headed into town with Quang and Thanh to hang out at a local coffee shop for a little bit. When we returned to the homestay we noticed a moving light up in one of the trees and realized it was Mr. Doan up on the tree harvesting honey from a bee hive up in the tree. 

Off to bed for a drive to our next stop!