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Aug 05

DIY laundry

HuĂ© doesn’t seem to have guesthouses, and most accommodation is in the form of hotels. We ended up in the Binh Minh 2 Hotel. The “2” signifies that their first hotel was successful enough to open up a second branch, about five minutes down the street. Some hotel “chains” even have three hotels in the same town.

Binh Minh 2 is relatively expensive, at US$15 for a twin share room (which comes with one double and one single bed), but it’s well worth it. Service is excellent. Reception was staffed by this diminuitive, yet highly energetic lady called Tu, whose smiles were so big that she had to close her eyes to fit them on her face. The room was not merely clean, it was spotless – more so than some of the 4-star hotels I’ve stayed at.

Anyway, having a bathtub at our disposal for the first time on this trip, we decided to forego the costly in-house laundry service and do it ourselves. So we pushed down on the plug, filled the bathtub up with water and mixed in some laundry powder we’d brought along. We dumped the clothes in and gave them a good scrub. The water turned an ugly shade of grey and we decided it was time to begin rinsing them. The only problem was, we couldn’t unplug the plug. It was stuck, and the grey water wasn’t going anywhere. I scampered downstairs to reception to see if we were doing anything wrong, only to be reassured, “Push plug to open, push again to close”.

Since doing our own laundry in the bathroom was in violation of the hotel’s guest regulations, we were in a bit of a fix. We couldn’t get them into our room, or they’d see the washing. So we moved the wet, soapy clothes into a basket, and decided to empty out the bathtub via the toilet. Manually. With a couple of empty water bottles.

Many, many minutes later, we’d siphoned tens of litres of water into the toilet and sink, by which time it was nearly midnight. We called a guy up who came to fix the plug. Moral of the story: make sure you can take the plug out before you fill up the tub.