Hi everyone! It’s Thanksgiving in the U.S.!
I want to take this note to wish everyone my love and regards. Personally, I have much to be thankful for. It’s been a wonderful adventure for me, going on two years straight by the end of February. I have discovered so many new places that are intriguing, powerful, beautiful and exotic. I want to live at them all!
Currently I am back in Da Lat, Viet Nam and staying for 10 weeks this time. I have rented a house to live in while I am here and got lucky through a referral from an expat friend that I have met previously here. It is a brand new 3-bedroom house with designer kitchen, a Jacuzzi tub and steam-room in the 2 full baths, located right on a canal! I am the first to live here so it is clean, clean, clean. I also have a brand new mountain bike that I ordered up custom from a bike shop in Saigon and had shipped up here. So my daily routine is to take a 5 km bike ride each way to the Sivananda Yoga Centre, take a 1 1/2 hour yoga practice either once in the morning or twice with an afternoon session and hang out in my kitchen fixing nice veggie meals. Da Lat is kind of like the Sonoma County of Viet Nam, so there is an abundance of excellent fruit and vegetables grown local. I have set up a nice little mediation room in the house and start each day in there for about 1/2 hour. There are lots of expats here and I will be joining the group for a little Thanksgiving ping-pong tournie later this afternoon! I am also thinking pretty seriously about talking to my landlord (a really nice young Vietnamese woman name Van) to secure the house long term and make Da Lat my base. Everything seems to lead to that as a logical conclusion. On top of all the benefits that I have already listed, the weather here is considered by many to be the best in the world.
One new achievement for me is that I earned my Open Water Diver certification. I spent a week with another local family in Nha Trang, Viet Nam on my way down the coast and took the 3-day diving course while the weather was good. (I flew back from India to Kuala Lumpur, spent a few days, then on to Da Nang, where I stayed 15 days with a local family).
So, now I am equipped to add some different adventures to my itinerary. Speaking of which, I already have the first half of 2016 lined up. On January 21 I will be heading back to Bangkok and will work my way down the gulf coast to Koh Tao for a 7-day dive package. Late February I will be flying back to Penang, Malaysia for two weeks and will probably journey to the east coast of the peninsula and visit the Perhentian Islands for more dives. Early March I will fly to the Philippines for a month, where I’m sure to dive some more. Then back to Kota Kinabalu on the Borneo side of Malaysia for a week. I found a really cheap ($6 each way!) AirAsia round trip flight to Bali from there, so I will spend a week in Ubud chasing the yoga crowd. Back to KK for another week, then off to Taiwan at least one month for more adventure. That will take me through the end of May or so. At that time, I intend to slow down and probably return to Da Lat.
So, I do have so much to be thankful for. I am having the time of my life, I am healthy and relaxed, my spiritual life is so much more complete. I give thanks…
And wishing all of you an excellent, meaningful holiday!