Four years ago, I never thought I'd be spending ten days in Vietnam when I was 18 and still in school, let alone on an all-expenses-paid trip with my former high school English teacher, Marjie Bowker. But that was before I met the Kutay's and before I met Marjie. I've never been in a place where I don't speak the language or read the signs, and now here we are on our way there, at the gate of our flight, surrounded by the people with whom we will be spending the next half of a day.
It didn't hit me until the night before, when I packed my less-than-3.4oz-liquid bag and zipped up my luggage that I was finally leaving for Vietnam. Never having left the country before, I still don't know how I'll feel when we land after our 18 hour flight, but with our matching backpacks, courtesy of the Kutay's at Wildland Adventures, Marjie and I are packed and ready to board our first plane to the Incheon airport in Seoul, South Korea—our first stop on the way to Saigon.
While waiting we've gone over our plans for Vietnam over the next ten days. We'll be staying in Ho Chi Minh city for a couple days in the village where Marjie taught and lived for two years. What I'm looking forward to most in the beginning of the trip is walking through the markets and trying all the food that Marjie has been hyping since forever, and I've wanted to try it for just as long. After trying the local cuisine our plans are loose, but we will also be visiting the Reunification Palace and the Cu Chi Tunnels to name just a couple of our destinations. Then we're off to Hoi An where we have an eco-lodge beach hut on the ocean.
Until we're sitting at the rice cake stand eating all the rice cakes we can, we'll be picking up some airport udon and relaxing before our 18 hour flight. Stay tuned for more . . . or read about how this all came about.
Guest blogger - Shea Ensz