Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Hoi An: A Walk on a Road Less Traveled

Just past the riverside market in Hoi An, we trudged over a crumbling concrete bridge in the declining afternoon light and entered Cam Nam Island, a sepulchral land dotted with swaying palms, dilapidated housing, and eerie cornfields. 

After drifting through a shiver-inducing abandoned resort at the base of the bridge, we continued on past a robust water buffalo and plopped ourselves down at a river-side cafe.  We watched the dwindling sun and the overladen passenger ferries chug past while we gingerly sipped coffee and nibbled on defrosted pizza.  Just meters away, bouncing in the shallows, two implacable crones at the helms of their rudimentary water-crafts repeatedly beckoned to us, imploring the seemingly profligate tourists to leave the island behind and return to the safe confines of the Old Town.  Despite their enduring protestations, we demurred and continued onwards.

Feeling jaunty and impetuous, we trailed a morose herd of ungulates led by a weather-beaten drover.

The concrete soon dissipated into fine sand and we plowed along, past leering brigands who made lude gestures at the young woman in our group and crusted pariah dogs with swollen, lolling tongues.

Towards the interior, atavism became the rule as inchoate bamboo barns housed bemused bovines...

... and ostensibly inanimate stalks of corn noted our ambling progress.

Piles of sticks were meticulously placed on the ground in varying locales, leading us to the only sound and reasonable conclusion- we had entered a haunted islet!

Right when bloody death at the hands of corn-field ghouls was imminent, our primitive path was bisected by a paved road and we collectively agreed that we had had enough with this macabre spit of land! Speeding up our languid pace, we raced towards the bridge and ambivalent humanity. 

On our flight out, we passed by this lachrymose, shackled primate: the enduring symbol of the misery that is Cam Nam Island.  What surly creeps to keep such a distinguished gentleman in that isolated yard.

Nearing our destination and dripping with cold, livid sweat, we were once again curtailed by an amoral, long-nailed proprietor and his pack of lascivious, child go-go dancers.  Attempting to use his feline claws to ensnare us into his den of iniquity, we dodged his advances and leaving impropriety behind us, swept across the bridge to (relative) safety.

Thanking the high heavens that we were able to escape the island, a picture was snapped of the men in our troop.  Only after reviewing the footage, did we realize that the Cam Nam Creepiness is indeed contagious and someone was infected!

Overwrought, antiquated prose: Gavin the Cam Nam Cretin
Photos, Outline, and Story: Nellie Pilisi 

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