Friday, June 25, 2010

Hoi An (1/3)

Author: I really want this post to go well, because this was my favorite city among the ones we visited. Hope you enjoy this as much as I did.



We arrived to Hoi An hours passed afternoon. The taxi driver left us at our hotel. A hotel that we didnt reserve and that we happen to find in the 'Lonely Planet' that my tripmates carried.

We explained to the receptionist that we were 4 and that we needed either 2 double bedrooms or a bedroom for 4. And as a joke the receptionist says that there was 1 left bedroom for the 4 of us at a very interesting price! We all agreed.

This city is definitely made out for girls. It was full of flea markets, stores with all sort of things, specially with clothes & shoes made in 24hrs or less with your measures, and tons of jewelry made out of coconuts...



We left our bags in the room, changed clothes and went for a walk. At the hotel, they explained us how to get to the main streets, the markets, the RESTAURANTS.. and gave us a map with indications. The vietnamese are (at least the ones in Hoi An) EXTRAORDINARY. So we started our walk in search for the food and discovered the stores.... the stores with those jewelries..... And started with the technique of the "Mad cua, Yam Yam" (a colleague at work told us that in order to ask for a discount, you had to say those phrases, which meant, in theory, "Too expensive, Cheaper Cheaper"). So people started to laugh at us, but in the end they ended up reducing prices! So it worked!



We stopped at an international restaurant, Before and Now, which made a huge contrast with the stores around. For the 4 of us, it seemed like a restaurant opened by some australian or someone near that area. We really felt like eating pasta, pizza... all of us were kinda fed up of the noodles, the chicken & the rice... The place was good, the food was
good and the service good too.
The curious thing about this place is, that it was not only a restaurant, but it seemed to be the only place opened at night for drinks...
So after a tour in the city, walking and taking pictures we decided to go back to the hotel for a "nap".

Me and A.L. without even noticing fell asleep, and the "nap" ended up being a long sleep. The other 2 went for a short walk and some drinks. Night arrived and our 2 tripmates came back. So they went to the pool and then the 4 of us got dressed up to go out again.


While looking for a cool place to go and considering the time it was, the only place we saw opened was the Before and Now restaurant. So we sat down, ask for some pizzas and drinks and enjoyed our INCREDIBLE vacations.

At almost midnight a young and handsome guy approached our table to invite us to the "Beach Club", Yeah baby, party @ the beach! But since our idea was to do some touring the next day we decided to leave the party for the day after..........

Friday, June 18, 2010

I'm still standing...............

Back to 1983. Elton John.

A lovely song, lovely lyrics and interesting sound... just heard it a few minutes ago in the taxi that brought me home from a night out and realized how it fit my actual moment. Enjoy fellas! And please check out the outfits of this video ;)

Im still standing

You could never know what it's like, your blood like winter freezes just like ice, and there's a cold lonely light that shines from you. You'll wind up like the wreck you hide behind that mask you use, and did you think this fool could never win. Well look at me, I'm coming back again. I got a taste of love in a simple way and if you need to know while I'm still standing you just fade away.

Don't you know I'm still standing better than I ever did, looking like a true survivor, feeling like a little kid.

I'm still standing after all this time, picking up the pieces of my life without you on my mind. I'm still standing yeah yeah yeah I'm still standing yeah yeah yeah

Once I never could hope to win, you starting down the road leaving me again. The threats you made were meant to cut me down and if our love was just a circus you'd be a clown by now.

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Off-site

---Written on Monday---

Sitting in another chair. This time the seat of a train which has Málaga as final destination for a business meeting.


At the end of every fiscal year (fy) in the company I work for we have the annual "Off-site" meeting. It is nothing more than going out of the office for 1 or 2 days and reviewing the achievements of the past fy and sharing with your other colleagues your future challenges for the fy.

My iPod on, of course. Alanis Morissette playing. My head blank but thinking at the same time, as if that could be a possible thing..



I have discovered that many of my "sit and write" moments are initiated by a good background song. So! Here I go!

In the past years I have met a lot of people: People that I like, people that I dislike, people that I wish I never run into again, people I cannot wait to see...

I remember a friend I met at work. I think we were both interns when I first saw him. My first impression of him was like he was a very silent person. He sometimes said hi and sometimes he just passed by without even noticing anyone's presence... or at least that is what he said...
But as time was doing its thing, I had the opportunity to talk to him and to get to know him a little. We had a few things in common like the fact that we were both born on the American continent and we are both living in Europe and working in a multinational company. Talking to him felt like a privilege because of his social perspective, he always came up with great ideas, one of them was something he called "syndrom of social laziness" (if that is a possible translation). Yes, I know, he is a psychologist or something related to Human Resources.

By simply talking to him, you could tell, this guy was interesting. Someone you could definitely learn something from.

I also remember a guy whom I met recently at a concert. The night of the concert was strange.. if I may call it that way =). The drinks were out of hand, the dancing was too much, so we decided to see each other again another day (probably because of the heat of the moment, none of us probably expecting too much from the other).. and so that happened.
This guy is something out of ordinary although from the outside perspective he seem very similar to you or me. We laughed, we talked about life, about trivial things but also about deep life experiences as well.

Those two "meeting people" experiences make me wonder why is it that one looses touch with the ones you would love to stay in touch with. Life would be so simple if we could just: make a call, pick up the phone, send a mail or a sms. Just a signal so that the ones you care about know you think about them. Just because you want to live life, because as Alanis Morissette says...when "You live, you learn"....






Sunday, June 06, 2010

Train to Da Nang (City #3)



After the great days spent in Ha Long and Hanoi, we had to take a train to go to the next city.

The arrangements were made prior to the beginning of the trip. Out of the 4 of us, I believe I was the only one who hadnt travelled this way before. So I was both curious and excited about this new experience.

Suddendly this was an adventure.


The cabin was a 4 bed (soft sleeper). We started our train road at 9pm and made out of it a karaoke, a photo studio, a library and of course a room to sleep.


The girls decided they wanted to go in the top beds so the boys had the lower ones. It felt cool to jump and to have a chance to write my notes for these posts, to think for a while...

The morning view from my window was amazing.


I am not sure of at what time we arrived to Da Nang, but I do remember that the sensation of leaving the train and feeling the hot air in my skin was again a flashback of what home feels.

We were harrased by many taxi drivers that wanted to take us to a hotel or I dont know where. But our intensions were to walk around and see what the city had to offer. One of the taxi drivers said responding to this, something like: "Da Nang? There is nothing to see in Da Nang."

But despite of that we started walking 100 mts with our heavy bags and the high sun temperatures, and suddendly we changed our minds.

We took a taxi to the next city which was, in theory, near Da Nang. This taxi was very friendly and very expensive. In our way to Hoi An (City #4) we discovered an area that seemed very "classy" with some casinos, fancy hotels...

And finally, there we were.... at Hoi An.... THE CITY.