I am really happy to be back! Not that I hated China but we had a layover in Vancouver and when I heard people speaking English in the airport I realized how much I missed home.
We are pretty much unpacked in our new place, though I am not unpacking any of our picture frames or other decorations because I am hoping that this is our year for an MBA and that means we will only be here for 6 months. If Chris gets into school I will be sad to leave here since we have family so close and we have made wonderful friends but I will not miss LEK and I am really looking forward to seeing Chris more often.
This post is actually about our Christmas and New Year's trip to Vietnam with Chris's family. so here it goes.
Here we are in the Ho Chi Minh airport just minutes past midnight on Christmas day.
After a few hours of sleep we piled back into the van to drive to the Cu Chi tunnels (Vietnam War site). Thanks Julie for making it feel at least a little bit like Christmas!
If you don't know about the Cu Chi Tunnels (I had no idea what they were) you should look it up. You will find some pretty wild tunnel pictures and learn the history. We all took turns getting into one of the old entrances to the tunnels...Chris decided he needed to mix things up and go in headfirst.
The kids in another old tunnel entrance.
After the tunnels we drove to Cat Tien National Park where we spent two nights. On one of the days we took a really lovely walk through the forest, complete with leech socks. The surroundings in Cat Tien were beautiful but when you find spiders the size or your hand, lizards, snakes, and scorpions in your room I feel like we invaded Nature's space a little.
Also in Cat Tien we visited a primate rehabilitation center and a bear rehabilitation center.
After Cat Tien we headed to Dalat, this was my favorite place. The city is in the hills and was built up by the French years ago so you get this unique France meets Vietnam environment.
What a hunk! Yes, a hunk.
One of the themes of this trip seemed to be the tour guide telling us how easy our next activity was going to be and then 15k through the mountains later you're thinking I really should have worn something different. We did a bike ride, river rafting, and hiking and all three were significantly more difficult then we were led to believe. BTW, that trip was my first and LAST time river rafting.
On our way from Dalat to Nha Trang we did a downhill bike ride which was amazing! I wish we had time to do a few more of those kind of rides.
Our last city was Nha Trang. Our guide told us they had some of the most beautiful beaches in the world...I think the beaches in southern California are prettier than what we saw, but it was still a good time. We got biked around town, Chris and Josh did Zorbing (one of the funniest things to watch), celebrated New Years by playing board games, and went to Monkey Island. Those monkeys can be terrifying but we befriended this one fellow and he would do some fun tricks for some treats.
PS - I don't know why most of the pictures won't allow you to open and enlarge them, sorry!