Grand plans of spending two weeks exploring South Korea quickly became spending two weeks entirely in Seoul… for all the right reasons.
After three weeks in Taiwan, I can confirm that I love it. I found even the simplest of activities thrilling here, so beware (as the title of this blog forewarns) my tips are as simple as can be!
We spent three weeks in Japan and I’ve only just got round to writing about it as I’m still making sense of it all…
So, we finally made it across the whole of Russia by the Trans-Siberian Rail! If it wasn’t clear already, its now clearer than ever that Russia is indeed huge. It’s taken us 21 days, 5 stops, 6,175 train miles (9937km) and 160 train hours, but we made it!
Today is my last day in Vietnam! I’ll be leaving hectic Hanoi and heading back to the homeland. Somehow, a casual ‘let’s go on an extended holiday in Asia’ turned into ‘let’s go live in Vietnam and get a job and apartment and motorbike and friends and many other much more long-term stuff…’ I genuinely don’t know how it happened, but I’m glad it did.
Before I came to Vietnam, the only thing I really knew about the country was that it was in Asia and there were lots of films about the war there. Not really a well-rounded view of things… I had some ideas about what it would be like, many of which were wrong. So, for other people that don’t have a clue about the place, maybe I can clear up a couple of silly ideas of my own before you have them too.
Going home after a year of travelling and living abroad is a strange feeling. Every film I’ve ever watched told me that I was meant to feel a surge of emotions, a burst of awareness and an eye-opening epiphany about life. I expected to rush off the plane at Heathrow and smell the fresh English air, dive on the tube with a new-found love of commuting (theatrically spinning around handrails, of course) and see the streets of London with wide, open eyes.
There is nothing like living in your home country all your life, surrounded by other people who have also lived in the same country all their life, to make you completely oblivious to what your culture is like.
Not long ago, I wrote a list of all the things I’d learnt about Vietnam after a month. Some were simple, some were interesting and some were complete misinterpretations. This month will mark my ‘six month anniversary’ of living in Ha Noi, Vietnam, and hopefully a few more lessons learnt. So, here I go again, trying my best to work out this funny ol’ place…
It may not seen like the New York of coffee shops or the Kenya of ground coffee but Vietnam is a strong contender for having some of the best coffee in the world. At the very least, it offers one of the widest varieties of unusual and interesting ways to consume your caffeine.