Nah Trang, Vietnam

The working title for this post was The Sea is Beautiful, and other new thoughts. Fair warning: I basically just word vomited onto this page and attached images of the sea.

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Pretty much everywhere painting done since we figure out how to do that cool light trick. 

It’s spring break time! Which means instead of donning my bikini and heading to the beaches of Mexico, I donned my sensible one piece (with coverup and swim shorts) and headed to the beaches of Vietnam.

For my dad’s 60th birthday, he wanted the whole family back together and exploring someplace new. Having lived in Hong Kong for a while now (and taking advantage of it’s nearness to other countries), it’s always exiting to visit someplace i’ve never seen before – especially somewhere as beautiful as Nha Trang. Forgive the cliche sunset and ocean photos, but it’s literally the only thing I wanted to take pictures of, it was so beautiful.

It is funny writing this, because I am overwhelmingly aware of the Grand Historical Tradition (Tm) of writing about the sea. It seems impossible that I should add anything new or overwhelmingly salient, but, like any other aspiring writer, here I am to throw my two cents into the overcrowded hat ring.

I may have my metaphors mixed up, but I’m sure you understand.

(What is a hat ring, anyway?)

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I watched this dude straight up murder a spider, to constantly remind you that nature will always be waiting.

There are always two things I think about whenever I am lucky enough to be near the ocean. the first is the Grand Literary Tradition, and how much I feel like a heroine whenever it is overcast and I struggle bravely across the sand. The second is how surprising I always find the ocean. Even just looking away for ten second, it always manages to take your breath away. I think you could live every day for the rest of your life by the sea, and constantly be shocked by how beautiful it was.

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View of the National Park ain’t bad either

Most of my thoughts over the break were spent freaking out over internships, enjoying a variety of fruity cocktails and pondering the immense weight of time and history, so here’s a brief aside about the weirdest spa experience I have every had. Due to my sunburn and dry skin (only one arm! and everywhere, respectively), I asked for a hydration treatment, where I assumed they’d just give me some lotion and a head massage and send me on my way.

Ohoho, boy was I wrong. Two hours later I emerged into the sunlight, thoroughly moistured. Thoroughly. I lay there for 90 minutes while a very strong and tiny vietnamese lady poured pure coconut oil into my hair (a traditional treatment, I have regrets on that front, my hair was Snape-like for days) while I lay there covered in mud. At one point she spent ten minutes jiggling the fat on my cheeks. Maybe for fun? By that point I was so confused by everything else that had happened it seemed totally normal. It was the strangest thing I’ve every experienced but so help me I emerged a beautiful greasy baby with fresh new skin.

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I’ve heard if you drink eight of these, you’ll see God behind the Walmart parking lot.

In conclusion, this post is dedicated to one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever drank, which is vietnamese coffee. You watch it drip into a glass and then pour condensed milk into it and it’s like a gut punch of caffeine. Anyways, I’m in love and if I ever figure out how to recreate it in America that’ll be the end of my everything, I’m fairly confident.

Happy Birthday Dad! XOXO

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Ireland: Rain and Sheep on the Wicklow Way.

At the beginning of the planning process for this trip, Mom sat us down and asked a very serious question ‘Do you want to do a walking trip?’.

Starting off into the Wicklow Mountains

Starting off into the Wicklow Mountains

Fortunately, I agreed. Four months later I found myself on the Wicklow Way, dumbstruck at the sheer beauty of the Irish mountains and countryside.

Reaching the summit

Reaching the summit

It was a far cry from our stay at Edinburgh. Gone were our friends. It was just my mother, my father and me for the next week or so. We’d be hiking a beginners trail, but navigation and pace would be set by us. Before we started, I was nearly certain that this would be one of worst possible ideas for family unity.

This was a common sight on the trip - turns out neither of my parents are brilliant at reading maps...or admitting they'd been wrong.

This was a common sight on the trip – turns out neither of my parents are brilliant at reading maps…or admitting they’d been wrong.

Instead, it turned out to be an incredible hike. I can’t express to you how beautiful the Irish countryside is. Everyday seemed like we were walking in a fairytale. Luckily for us, it didn’t rain as much as we were expecting. But enough about that – I’ll let the pictures do the talking…

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Isn’t it gorgeous? That’s just a bare fraction of all the photos I took. Here’s hoping I find myself wandering the wicklow way again in the future.