Tuesday, 22 December 2009

Xin Chao!

...which means hello in Vietnamese!
(You pronounce it sin jow.)
I came back from South East Asia three weeks ago
(it's taken me a little while to settle back in)
and I'm happy to report that I enjoyed Malaysia,
and would really like to spend more time there,
and that I looooooved Vietnam!!!
Vietnam has beautiful, welcoming people,
a picturesque countryside,
divine food and a fascinating history.
Here are some of my many, many, many photographs:
(...and I'll load more onto Flickr as I edit them.)

Batik, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Mosaic detail, Islamic Arts Museum, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

National Monument, Lake Gardens, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Exquisite needlework, Dalat, Vietnam

There was lovely embroidery for sale throughout the country. I saw a lot of women crocheting in their market stalls too.

Figurine of Quan Yin, Nguyen Nga Centre for Children with Special Needs
, Quy Nhon City, Vietnam
The Nguyen Nga Center is also a sheltered workshop for adults. I met some of the young men and women who live there and they were absolutely charming! They produced really beautiful weaving and jewellery too.

Small boy from the Koho Minority, Chicken Village, Central Highlands, Vietnam
This dear, playful little fellow followed us all through the village, alternately showing us karate moves and growling like a tiger.

Bride and groom, Dalat, Vietnam
They were so happy!

Dog, on the road to Quy Nhon, Vietnam
Did someone say lunch?

Chinese temple, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
(This shot was taken by my fabulous guide Ling)

Mosquito nets and early morning light, Mekong Delta, Vietnam

Early morning, Mekong Delta
I loved the Delta and its soft light, quietness and tranquility...

Mountain waterfall, outside of Dalat, Vietnam

Sunset, Quy Nhon City, Vietnam

Lamp light, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

Lunch, Saigon Cooking Class, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
This was first course ~ Mustard Leaf Rolls with Crunchy Vegetables and Shrimps.

I know that I've been really fortunate to have had this experience.
I am really glad that I chose to travel, for part of the way at least, with
Intrepid Travel and I feel so lucky to have met the people who took the tour with me. Caroline, Sonia, Anne, Donald, Sue, Sharon, Hong, Loy...thank you!!!!!!!

Of course,
I took some crafty work with me.
I finished off my
Sweet Lorraine scarf just before I joined the Intrepid tour:

Such a good pattern ~ Sweet Lorraine was easy to memorise, quick to make and had a border that worked up as I crocheted. It kept me lovely and warm too.

In case you're wondering, I've started to watermark my photos to try and stop people from using my pictures (and profiting from them) without my permission. Sadly, I've come across a few sites who've helped themselves to my images and haven't removed them even though I've written to them and asked them to. If anyone would like a tutorial on how to put watermarks into your shots (I have a PC and use Photoshop Elements) just let me know.

And now I am off to catch up on some
long overdue blog reading and commenting.

For those of you who celebrate Christmas, I hope yours is a merry one!