Wednesday, 22 November 2017

Episode 90: South

It was clear that Lea wasn't getting to Hanoi anytime soon, particularly with all flights overbooked or cancelled due to the coup.  Alessio's business trip to Bangkok was in a state of flux and so suggested that they get out of the city, one of Alessio's business contacts was based in Pattaya, a fishing village south of the city.  He called his acquaintance and agreed that they would make their way to him.

Lea was in awe of Alessio, and couldn't have imagined how she would have survived without him being there every step of the way through her journey, particularly this last and most traumatic chapter...

Outside the airport he hailed a passing cyclo and instructed him to take them to the Hualumphong train station, the driver glancing at their baggage waggled his head and roared off into the traffic.  Although Alessio was frustrated he persevered and finally was able to flag down a taxi, who begrudgingly opened the trunk of the car and helped load the two large suitcases.

They sat sweating and smelly in the back of the taxi as it slowly made its way through the heavy traffic of scooters, cars and roadblocks of tanks that sat astride the road toward the train station. 

The progress was frustratingly slow and as they neared the station realized that it would be impossible to take the train, Alessio leaned over and asked the driver to continue onto Pattaya.  

The look of amazement passed over the drivers face, but smiling his toothless grin readily agreed.  Alessio and he quickly negotiated a price with the use of his fingers and gestures, of which the driver demanded half now.  Alessio reached into his pocket but realized his wallet and all his money had been taken by the military during his custody.

He sheepishly turned to Lea and asked if she had any money...

Episode 89: Date

Mai purred into the phone "Chào buổi sáng người yêu" (good morning lover) as Bill smiled to himself.  He still blushed whenever Mai overtly greeted him this way, and although he loved her fiercely he still wasn't used to someone being so open in the way they spoke to him.

"Tôi đang rất tốt đẹp, như thế nào về bạn?" (I'm great beautiful, how about you?) he replied, and although getting more familiar with the nuances of the Vietnamese language still spoke slowly and with a strong accent, and with his self consciousness kicking in quickly reverted to english.  Mai appreciated his attempts to learn Vietnamese and embrace the local customs more than he could ever imagine.

"Are you free for lunch darling?" she enquired.  He loved how she gave herself to him unconditionally, he felt a wave of warmth flood over him every time he thought about her.

Quickly looking through the day timer on his desk he noted that he was free until 3:00 pm, "I'm all yours love" he said smiling.

See you at noon she said...  

Episode 88: Conflict

Lea and Alessio embraced, both a little the worse for wear...  Alessio was sporting a deep purple welt under his right eye and clear bruising on his neck and although disheveled still sported his signature smile.  Lea sensed the smell that they both emanated, the pungent aroma evident with every breath.  She desperately wanted to get under a shower or into bath and clean off the grime and smell of fear that the last 48 hours had brought.

It was clear to both of them, particularly after their traumatic experience that they needed to leave Thailand as fast as possible.  After their release they were thrust out of the interrogation area, but not before Alessio had his watch and wallet confiscated by the over zealous guards that had beaten him during his detention.  

The last 48 hours of adrenaline infused survival had left her bereft of and energy or enthusiasm for anything Asian.  She wanted out as quickly as possible, but was conflicted in that she had promised Bill that she was going to visit him in Hanoi, but deep down didn't want to spend another minute in this infernal chaos.  

Alessio sensed her state of mind and wrapped his strong arms around her and pulled her into his chest...