The trip is going well and we are all doing as bit better with the culture shock. Though the driving experience will never not be harrowing. Motor bikes are all over the roads and weave between cars and trucks who constantly are honking and weaving around each other as well. Stressful to say the least. I just close my eyes.
Otherwise, we hit the point where we are struggling with the food a bit but now we’re trying to have one dinner per day that’s western and that seems to make a big difference. (Note – this for two days or so got us back on track and adventuring in local cuisine again btw.)
Otherwise culturally its also been surprising. Especially as we have learned from our current guide that there is quite a significant bias of male over female. Sons are much more highly valued han daughters. They even have a local saying that’s something about how having daughters means you can only sell them off to husbands but having a son means you can buy a daughter. An ideology I wasn’t overly impressed with. It’s also been interesting to see the differences in mentality and personality of the towns and people in the North vs the South. Definitely still a difference in perception and approach to life and their country. – Note we later found out from our next guide that one reason for this has to do with the burial traditions and some specific rituals which can only be preformed by sons rather than daughters and lets the person be fully released from the earth – this makes a lot more sense and was a much better explanation.
The town we’ve been in is called Hoi An – it has some beautiful and quite old seeming buildings with quite a strong influence in the architecture. They looked beautiful, in particular with these colorful lanterns hanging everywhere.
Today we are flying from Da Nang to Hanoi for a few days. No idea what’s up there. Last night we stayed in a town called Hue (pronounced way). And we went to a late 19th century citadel and tomb where the old kings lived and are worshipped. The last king abdicated around 45 or so and died in France in 1997. I didn’t realize this government was quite as young as it is really. Today we went to the tomb of one of the longest reigning kings. Its really more of a giant garden with lovely ponds and grassy areas along with a few ornately decorated structures. I love going to ruin like things like this.
There was also these guys in the moats who were catching and removing the fish… can’t remember why, cleaning maybe? Anyway it was kind of cool.
Luke and I had a bit of a good time here running and jumping through the long hallways – we caught a few photos of each other.
We also kissed some elephants, mimicked some statues as you can see etc…