May 18th, 2016
I met Mr. Phong the night before at his restaurant and he invited myself and a few other American guys to his village the next day. He said we needed to experience Vietnam as it really is, and I had to agree.
Mr. Phong lives in a town about an hour away from Hoi An, so we hopped in a taxi and finally arrived to his home.
It was interesting to see his village, which he notes has a bit higher income than the average Vietnamese village (perhaps funded by the tips from all of these tours?), and we were granted access to numerous homes/shops/temples throughout the day.
We discussed many topics that morning, including the Vietnam War from his perspective (he fought for the South, whereas his Uncle fought for the North), Communism, religion in Vietnam, and family life in more rural villages.
We topped off the tour with a walk around the town and market, then a wonderful lunch prepared freshly by his wife.
I wouldn’t take this morning back for anything!
Afterward my tour, I went back for my first fitting at the tailors! So far so good – but the best part was a new friend I made! Freja, from Denmark, happened to have a fitting at the same time as me. After talking a bit, we opted to get some dinner and drinks that nights.
We spent the evening wandering around the Old Town of Hoi An, getting a nice dinner by the river, and then climbing into a boat to release lanterns in the water for good luck. It was great to get along with someone so effortlessly that Freja and I actually traveled together for the rest of our time in Vietnam!
Next up, the full moon festival in Hoi An!