For those of you who are not up for the good, the bad and the ugly of this trip then I suggest you close out of this post now although I do promise not to provide the gory details.
So much for my gloating before I left about the iron stomach that I have and that I NEVER get sick, ever ever ever!!! Well suffice to say, am now struggling with gastro. It is not so bad that I think I am going to die but bad enough that I am not game to venture too far from my hotel today. You’ve all been there before I am sure. While I sincerely hope it only lasts a day or so, I am stocked up with DVD’s including Revenge Season 1 and 2 and numerous movies so I am pretty set. And THAT is all I wish to say about that matter.
The bonus for this blog is that I am in no frame of mind or body to talk about food either so you get a little more of a break from that as well. So for those of you that had tissues ready to deal with the drool as I described in detail todays menu, you can put them away.
On Sunday, my friend Van took me to this beautiful tea house called Reaching Out which was just divine. It is the most beautiful place in so many ways. Firstly is was created by and is totally run by other-Abled people. This is the name they so appropriately give to people with disabilities, which by the way I love!! The decor was stunning, the girls who served us tea were a delight and the whole place had the most gentle, peaceful vibe I have ever experienced. I mean look at the photos below at how incredible the it all looked.
Reaching Out also have a Fair Trade shop in Hoi An and online store where everything is made by people with other-abilities. I am sure I don’t have to tell you that I have spent quite a bit of time in there already and yes, have purchased some lovely items and yes, I will be going back there again before I come home and yes, I will most likely have to buy another suitcase to fit everything in it and YES, I am totally inspired by this wonderful organisation whose 4 core values are:
- Continuous Improvement
- Fair Trade
- Passionate teamwork
If you want to purchase reasonably priced gifts that as they say aptly on their website “gifts that give twice” then I suggest you checkout their website and online store at http://www.reachingoutvietnam.com/
I had forgotten what I had titled this blog post until just then so I guess I better get to why I called it The 8th Wonder of the World. Well I know that there are supposedly lots of “8th wonders” but I think mine should be the official one. Mine is that all the local women here, in 35+ degree heat, with humidity off the charts walk around in jeans and often long sleeve tops with not a single bead of sweat on their bodies. They look incredibly fresh and beautiful ALL day. At lunch time they even put on long sleeve jackets before they leave the office, more to protect from the sun than because they are cold but thick, long sleeved jackets – I mean really??? Here I am, at 9am in the morning, fresh out of the shower and have only been in the office for a few minutes and I already have sweat pouring out of every single part of my. My hair is already frizzy and looks like I have haven’t touched it for a month and I am so sticky that I have to peel my behind (am being polite because of the potential reader base) off of my chair. So you can imagine what I look like after a full day in the office if that is only after a few short minutes. The Vietnamese women however, look at the end of the day, exactly like they did first thing in the morning. If that does not qualify for the 8th Wonder then I really don’t know what will.
On a literary note, I met a lovely Aussie family a few days ago at the hotel and Thomas (the Dad) left me a great book to read called Catfish and Mandala – A Two-Wheeled Voyage through the Landscape and Memory of Vietnam. Not only is it a perfect book for me to be reading while I am here but I am also loving it so far. There is something about travelling that automatically allows for a connection between people – whether it be a chat in the pool or a quick exchange in a cafe or shop. It is one of the things I love most about being in other parts of the world.
So that is it for me today, need a shower to cool down and then I am going to curl up with my book for a while and pray for my stomach to settle quickly.
Catch you tomorrow xx