TB and I have had a couple of much more relaxing days. The hotel here in Nha Trang is right on the beach; an oasis of fine wines, good food, massages and tranquility. Yesterday we travelled up river to a small village; visited a traditional multi-generational Vietnamese home, a rush matt weaving business run by two women and a bakery which supplies two thousand baguettes a day out of a space the size of my bathroom at home. We then played hooky and begged off the rest of the day to relax at the hotel. Much needed on my part as it was the first down time in three weeks and for Barbara too as she is battling her tummy.
I introduced her to PHÔ, which went over well indeed. I have been converted to the savoury soup breakfast – Mohingar in Myanmar and Phô here in Vietnam. If you are a sweet breakfast person this wouldn’t work but I much prefer savoury so I am quite happy.
The bakery photos will be interesting – if I can ever upload them – the bakers are slapping together baguettes with cigarettes hanging out of their mouths! The bread here is delicious – light and airy and the croissants are perfection, so sometimes it is much better NOT to look too closely at how ones food is prepared in my opinion. The coffee is also magnificent – likely both bread and coffee are a legacy of the French occupation. Fortunately the American legacy doesn’t seem to include much “fast food” – I have seen a Burger King and a KFC but they certainly aren’t common and no McDonalds at all yet.
The Vietnamese people we have met so far have been courteous and friendly and the women if they aren’t in traditional clothes, dress quite formally. In the countryside we have seen quite a few people dressed in the iconic loose pyjamas and conical hats. Again pictures to follow if I can ever get a fast or robust connection – sigh!
Our guide is coming shortly to take us on to Hoi An and Da Nangh. New Years – TET – preparations are in full swing with yellow and red being the predominant colours of flowers EVERYWHERE!