Return to Vietnam

Twelve years ago, we took a trip of a lifetime with our daughter and two friends. We traveled from Ho Chi Minh City to Da Nang to Hanoi, Vietnam. We ate fantastic food, and visited magical beaches, museums, ancient ruins, and rural villages. We also met two very good friends, Duong and Toai.

Da Nang Airport with Toai, Li, Steve, Jennifer and Duong

Da Nang Airport with Toai, Li, Steve, Jennifer and Duong

A lot has changed since that first visit. Vietnam is evolving and developing into a thriving country. And, Duong and Toai’s life changed in an instant when their daughter was killed in  a tragic bus accident on an icy Idaho road. Trang was the link between our families.She was studying in Boise and that is were we met. She introduced us to her parents and we visited and toured with them on our trip. It is bittersweet that our friendship with her parents was strengthened due to her death.

We met lots of family and friends and also made a trip to visit Trang’s tomb in Hue.

Toai's parents in Hue. Toai was born in this house.

Toai’s parents in Hue. Toai was born in this house.

A very special dinner with very good friends in Duong and Toai's home.

A very special dinner with very good friends in Duong and Toai’s home.

Duong meets with 10 ladies in Hue when ever she can. They have been friends for 49 years. It was an honor to spend the afternoon with them hearing stories and practicing English.

The Ladies of Hue with Steve at a dinner.

The Ladies of Hue with Steve at a dinner.

Tomb marker for Trang in Hue

Tomb marker for Trang in Hue

Da Nang is quickly becoming a destination for beach lovers. Resorts line the shoreline. The famous China Beach is a well-used public beach.

 

this is 6:00 a.m. on China Beach. There were thousands recreating so early in the morning.

This is 6:00 a.m. on China Beach. There were thousands recreating so early in the morning.

Da Nang is a river city. At least three new bridges have been built across the Han river in the last 10 years. Two of the bridges have been designed by Americans. The most impressive is the Dragon Bridge. It is beautiful in day and in night.

Dragon Bridge spanning the Han river in Da Nang

Dragon Bridge spanning the Han river in Da Nang

Some things have not changed much. One thing that we loved when we visited before was the basket boat. In Da Nang, there is still many basket boats in use.

Basket boats on the beach in Da Nang.

Basket boats on the beach in Da Nang.

 

There is so much more to the story of our experience in Vietnam. Future posts will chronicle. For now, we are enjoying the memory and and looking forward to returning in September.

 

One thought on “Return to Vietnam

  1. Finally getting the chance to browse your blog. Tender story yesterday. I remember hearing of the tragic loss of your friend. I will continue to read your pages and consider your recipes and scenics a travelogue for when I get to visit your neck of the woods again someday! Keep it up…

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