We returned from our trip to find out that there is some problem with Nate's Canadian passport (but no-one is able to tell us what the problem is until tomorrow) so we are delaying our flight until Friday. We are disappointed of course, but we have Nate with us now and another wait is ok.
Our trip to Halong Bay was good...the place itself is amazing. It is one of the most beautiful things I have ever seen in my life. More than worth the trouble of getting there and the leaking toilet in our bathroom. Nate seemed to enjoy himself and the staff on the boat all took their turns holding him while we tried to eat our meals. It wasn't until we boarded the first boat that I realized I was getting on a boat without a life jacket for Nate. I tried to laugh it off, but was nervous throughout the whole trip. The first time we took our puppy Lola onto the pontoon boat at the cottage I wanted to put a life jacket on her...and she is a Labrador and could out swim most.
The bay itself is populated by a small floating village. I watched a young boy row his boat with his feet while he enjoyed whatever it was that he was eating. There were dogs barking, laundry hanging and various other everyday activities taking place. Several little row boats approached ours to offer the sale of shells, water, beer and other goods. We wondered if it's possible for someone to live and die on the bay and never see the world beyond it.