I tried to wake up early to say hello to Liem, a tour guide I met a couple of years back, and to say goodbye to Eugene and Michelle, a very nice couple that came for a visit. I was honored that came to Nha Trang to meet us. With my memory the way it is, I had forgotten that I had given Michelle some travel advice and she had hired my friends company to guide them through Vietnam. Unknown to me, She has been following this blog for some time, and I was shocked over and over again with recounts of my past experiences that I had totally forgotten about. It is a shame they were only here for the one day. I would have enjoyed including them on one of my adventures (or misadventures). We spent an enjoyable day talking and had a great seafood meal with one of the most unusual fishes I have ever seen. As is so common with me, I did not remember to use the camera in my pocket to document the day. Thank you for the meal Michelle and Eugene, and we look forward to continuing our conversation and friendship in the future.
In my last post I referred to “Homestay”
Homesays have been around for a while, but have become a very popular way for students and young people to find affordable
housing. In most cases, a series of small rooms with no furnishings, perhaps a squat toilet, and a shared kitchen area. They are very much like hostels but people live there on a permanent basis while going to work or school until they can afford their own place. These rooms can be about the size of an average bedroom, but in many cases they are shared by 4 people.
A homestay can also be for tourists. There are many places in Vietnam where you can overnight on an Island in the Mekong, or with a hill tribe in the mountains. The concept is the same except they are usually a bit more comfortable.
Some of you may have heard of the “Blind massage service” that is available in Asia. I have now been for four massages to give them a chance and see what the fuss is all about. The first I went for was at a blind massage centre and was somewhat unsatisfactory (60000dong). The second was at a health spa and was terrible. Even though the massage was almost an hour… it seemed to be all about a happy ending. I will never go back to that place for sure (180000dong). The third was at a high end health spa. I had a personal attendant for 2 hours. I was bathed, massaged, spent time in a steam bath and sauna, and even fed a bowl of congee and fruit at the end. (250000dong plus I tipped the attendant)
The expensive one was good, but it was a total relaxation 2 hour experience with a nap room provided.
Today is was to a different blind centre and wow!! Now I know what a massage can be. A fellow named Bao got his hands on me and when he got to areas that he could tell were tense, he worked the muscles hard. After an hour under his hands, I felt what a good massage can really do. I might become a regular of this place. The cost?? (40000dong)
Some random pics…