Saturday, November 20, 2010

A trip to the countryside......

.....AND a few other random pics!

My friend Suzanne holds an English Club for people out of her house once every week.  This is just an opportunity for folks who wish to improve their English Language skills or just want to constantly practise speaking English so that they don't lose proficiency in it.  She collects a tiny sum from each participant, and turns around and buys chips and snacks an pop and the like!

Every other week, I'll hop over there and volunteer (because there are so few Tay in Hai Phong, and these are good people)....though it's not really volunteering.  It's more like having a few pints and a few smokes and talking with people.....I genuinely enjoy it!

So a couple weeks ago, two of the members, Hop and Hien, organised a field trip to a countryside village called Vinh Bao (pronounced "Ving Bow") where one of them was born and raised (Hien) and the other one still lives (Hop)!

Fun time....saw a water puppet show, hand carving of wood, meet Hien's 99-year-old-grandfather.....just a relaxing, fun time and great to get outta the city!

One of the places that we visited was this big-ass temple with this neat statue park on rather expansive grounds!

The English Club on a bridge on the temple grounds

Cool looking statue....

Dat with village children on a mule.....

Me greeting villagers.....

Being on religious grounds at a temple, I'm sure I'm gonna burn in hell for taking these pics....but, hey - I'm sure The Buddhists have a sense of humour!

THIS was incredibly - and right when ya think that everything nowadays is mass-produced in China quickly, cheaply and by machine.....


Now, a few random pics - 

Suzanne also had a birthday party a few weeks ago that I had the pleasure of attending!  Lotsa food, beer, cake and fun!  The cake we got her says "The Queen of Hai Phong" on it because that is what a lot of us jokingly refer to Suzanne as, being that she's been here over four years and is (to the best of my knowledge) one of the longest-residing Tays in Hai Phong......

.......which, shortly thereafter, led to a bit of a food fight with Julie and Jena.

Saturday the 20th was Vietnam National Teacher's Day.  One of the gifts that I got from some of my students was this cool apple clock, with the little apple-looking guy that swings on a pendulum at the bottom of it.  Also pictured are just some of the many flower bouquets that Tam and I received!  Just confirms what great students we have!

...just soooo glad that I didn't hafta go through the pain in the ass of actually cooking this chocolate bar!

....and finally - a couple pictures of Emily, as promised!

Flying outta Cat Bi (the name of the Hai Phong airport) on Thursday.....let's hope this horse is still wandering around in front of the airport when I return....might need a ride home and taxis are expensive!

More when I land...prolly Friday or Saturday!!



Anonymous said...

I really love these photos, Ernie. I'm sure I'll never get to Vietnam in my lifetime, so it's nice to see these bits and pieces of real life there. That carving was amazing. And Emily is just a little doll! Glad you included a couple pics of her, too!


Anonymous said...

Ernie, Interesting pictures. Emily is such a cutie ! The woodcarving, were these pieces for use in architecture ?

E said...

Thanx, Rebecca.....really 'ppreciate the encouragement!!

Hey Judy, yeah....I think they are meant for interior walls near where the wall meets the ceiling, and yeah....they are beautiful.

Hey - I'm gonna be back for The Solstice! I'll swing by your guy's house on the night of the 21st, if thass cool!