In the absence of a job I fancy doing – not teaching English – it is increasingly looking like Plan B.
Plan B involves spending six months in Vietnam and six months working my nuts off in Scotland to finance the dream. If I can figure out when the Scottish summer is (last year it was a Wednesday) I can therefore miss out the worst of the Scottish winter months. And that would be no bad thing.
Even if I have to spend the winter here in Vietnam, it will still be much better than the global dreichness of a Scottish winter that apparently stretches on for half the year.
I used to stay on an island in the far north west of Scotland and the winters there are a feat of endurance in the face of cold, horizontal rain and frequent gales. In the depths of winter the latitude, 58 degrees North, shared with Alaska and the Russian city of Perm in the Ural Mountains, means that it is 10 am before it is what most reasonable people would regard as broad daylight.
Factor in rain storms and heavy clouds and you are driving around with lights on by half past three in the afternoon and seeing pitch blackness well before 5pm. It is quite depressing to be honest. There is little joy in travelling to and from work in the dark. It certainly doesn’t do your car battery much good either.
For some people the only time during the working week when they enjoy natural daylight is when they step out of the office at lunchtime.
The flipside, of course, is the long summer days. It never truly gets dark. The sun ducks down below the horizon for a couple of hours, a tell tale red glow giving away its hiding place. It’s not unheard of for it to be bright enough to play golf at midnight. During these almost endless hours of daylight those people with motorbikes dust them down after six months of idleness and hit the road.
But back to Vietnam. As an aside really, what will I do with this blog? I mean, I can hardly write Ha Noi Scribbles from Scotland. I guess it might morph into a new blog, go into hibernation for six months like a Scottish motorbike, or serve as a showcase of writing for potential employers.
Who knows? I have spent the best part of the last two years making things up as I go along. Why stop now?