In some ways, I think we got our schedule here backwards. It would have been better if we'd gone to a bunch of other places first, before landing in Hoi An (which we think is the nicest place in the country). As it turns out, we started in the best place, with our friends for Christmas, and nothing since has measured up. It's not that other places in Vietnam aren't nice, it's more that we'd all rather be back in Hoi An. I think we also went through a bit of an emotional letdown when the Brandons left. (The kids feel we're living in exile.)
If you've read Ursula's latest posting, you'll know we're all feeling a bit unsettled and unsatisfied. Skiers know how you feel when you're having a great day on the slopes, then go into the chalet for a while in the afternoon, and then can't get back into it when you go back on the slopes for the last hour. (Especially if you've been skiing for 15 days straight!) That's about how we feel.
I also think that a month in hotel rooms with no cooking facilities has taken it's toll. The food here is good and cheap, and there are non-Vietnamese options if we want a change of pace, but we all miss home-cooking. We have 3 more nights of hotels and restaurants before we get to Australia, where we'll have 14 nights in apartments with cooking facilities. Travelling by car for 2 weeks also means we will be able to buy a cooler, and stock up on a better variety of groceries and fresh foods. I can't tell you what I'd pay for a bowl of Shreddies and milk or granola and yogurt.
Anyway, these are our first world problems. The good news is that I'm excited about getting to Korea in a month. We'll turn our apartment into a comfortable home, and start to build a network of friends. That's what I'm looking forward to.
I've posted a few photos below from the bike ride Ursula and I took around town today. It was a misty, muggy day. After wearing my raincoat for a while, I decided I'd rather get wet than sweat it out in a long sleeve coat. It was only about 25 degrees, but the humidity here is intense.