One other young man was booked to come along on our north Vietnam trekking tour. At the last minute he was joined by a girl he’d clearly hooked up with in the previous days and then paid for her to join him.
Obviously there’s nothing worse than young love when you’re not a part of it, so this development was hardly met with enthusiasm by Bernd and myself. However, it could be a positive reflection of the new, relaxed, sabbatical Jill that I quite liked them.
He was a friendly American engineer and she was a pretty Italian pianist. Very exotic and European for him so I could understand his infatuation. Her English wasn’t very good so he probably seemed far more interesting than he actually was.
Headphones in the tour van to drown out their giggling was a must, clearly. I did make the occasional snide remark to Bernd eg. “Should’ve got loverboy to buy her hiking shoes” as she fell over in the mud in flip-flops. But I was also heard to remark “you’re only young once” and “good for them”.
They did manage to restrain themselves in the homestay when our bed was only separated from theirs by a thin curtain, which was much appreciated. I didn’t even feel resentful in the hotel when I was rinsing the mud out of Bernd’s socks while they were undoubtedly having carefree, abandoned young-person sex in the room next door.
I even entertained a romantic vision of them marrying someday like my friends Krista and Paul, who met when backpacking. I’m sure they’ll get straight back onto Tinder in their respective homelands after this trip but at least it shows I’m capable of romantic visions 🙂