Today in Sapa, Thé tried every dissuasive argument to prevent us from going on our much awaited trekking. It’s true that it was still raining and it might be better to take the jeep to go down the valley. So the jeep it was, along a narrow winding road partially buried in mud from recent landslides – many of them. The jeep was bumping, jerking and hiccupping and I was getting fed up and a bit sick too, so I decided to continue on foot. Thé didn’t think that was a good idea but he reluctantly followed, for a while. I have to admit that he was wearing nice shoes and might not have wanted to get them all muddied up. I made a note to buy him hiking boots back in Sapa. “Are you planning to get down there running?” he sneered. I suggested he get back on the jeep, which he did – the sissy – and I continued on foot. It was glorious: the oblique sun on the sculptured tapestry or rice paddies and low hanging clouds on the summits high peaks.
Down in the village, we walked into one of the houses. Below the main level, raised on stilts, a buffalo peacefully chewed his cud while the owner was busy at some carpentry task: building a coffin for his father.
Was he dead? Oh no, well, alive and at work in the fields. Quite fine actually. That was just a gesture of filial piety. God forbid that I’d ever come home to my sons building my coffin!
Sapa is a charming alpine town, on the border of China near Lao Cai.
I was told that I should try a Sapa massage and thought I needed one. And what a massage it was! At one point, that woman had my leg over her shoulder. Further on, she was massaging my inner thigh with her feet. I lifted my head, wondering what she was up to. I thought it was her head down there. Let’s just say that it was…special: absolutely not sexual but erotic in a chaste sort of way. One hour for $12! I’ll have to try that again, but I’ll keep my underpants next time.