From Jamie's Philippines Pics

We have also had the opportunity to travel to some amazing places in China, Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam, the Philippines, and Bali. We have archived all of our travels and living experiences abroad; and if you wish, you can read about our adventures by finding the archives on the right of this page and by checking our Photo Album.

We appreciate all of our family and friends who have stayed in touch and emailed us with encouraging words throughout the year. We hope you will continue to keep us in your thoughts as we continue our adventure of living abroad teaching at an international school. For those who have stumbled upon our site, check out the "About Eric and Jamie" section on the right for more information.

Thanks for checking us out!

Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness."
- Mark Twain

"Perhaps travel cannot prevent bigotry, but by demonstrating that all peoples cry, laugh, eat, worry, and die, it can introduce the idea that if we try and understand each other, we may even become friends."
- Maya Angelou






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Monday, October 5, 2009

Vietnam - Day 8

From Vietnam 2009

Today was a day that Jamie and I were excited about yet still dreading. Most of dread came from the fact that we were a bit unprepared for hiking in the mud and rain. However, the day turned out great, we rented some little rubber boots from our hotel, and started off our hike with a 3 km walk through the streets of Sapa and down a country road.

After making a quick pit stop, we headed down the hill into the rice fields and terraces. When I say down hill, I mean it. Our little train was slick, rocky, and muddy. Many people fell (I fell once or twice and Jamie fell once), but we had local villagers there that acted as our "guides." These 80 pound women literally held us up as we slid down the mountain for over 3 hours of hiking. The scenery was amazing as we went from the top of the mountain down the steep rice terraces toward the valley with a river running through it.

We went through 2 different villages of the Black H'mung people and one of the Zai people. These villagers make their living by growing rice or working in the city of Sapa (men) or making hand made items to sell to tourists (women). The items are quite nice and authentic.

I had to battle through some kidney stones about half way through our hiking trip, but pretty much walked them off. I had some help from my guide as she talked to me about village life and basically got my mind off of my pain.

After a quick bus ride back to our hotel, we showered up and ate a quick dinner before heading to the train station in Lao Cai which was about an hour drive from Sapa. Our train left promptly at 8:10 pm and arrived in Hanoi about at 4:15 in the morning. Luckily, we had arranged for an early check in at our hotel, which meant we could go straight on in (after waking up the poor guy at the desk who was flaked out on the 2nd floor).

Be sure to check out our pictures from our hike today. I look great in my camouflage boots and shorts.

Keep reading... You definitely don't want to miss what happened on Day 9!

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