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Saturday, September 27, 2014

Mont Saint Michel - 3rd destination in my train journey around France

I never heard about this place before, I only found it while preparing my journey. Seeing this site on the internet, I was so surprised and wondering why I never ever knew about its existence!
I was hesitating a bit as I couldn't decide from where I better depart for Mont St Michel. Right from Paris? Or from Rouen? Rouen was also my top choice due to my wish to see Claude Monet's garden, but unluckily one day before my departure for Rouen, I had to cancel my short trip to Givenchy-Vernon to visit the famous impressionist-painter's house.

From Rouen to Mont St Michel was a 4-hour long ride in the train plus another 15' in the shuttle bus from Pontorson to this site.Anyway I was so excited to see the sight of MSM (i.e. Mont St Michel) from far in the train and then from the bus when it was approaching. It looked so stunning on the blue sky background!

                         I couldn't believe in my eyes - Mont St Michel was right in front of me 

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Rouen - the 2nd destination in my train journey around France - Part 2

After three days in Paris, I boarded my first train to Rouen. To be honest I don't know why I chose this town, I probably think that would be a better place to go to my next destination - Mont St Michel - the second famous site in France after Tour Eiffel, and on the way to Rouen I may visit Claude Monet's garden at Giverny Vernon. But I was wrong - from Rouen to Mont St Michel - a long ride, but I was not wrong about Rouen - a beautiful old town with amazing Gothic cathedral. Unluckily I skipped my visit to Claude Monet's house due to my "ambitious" plan!

                  Vieux Rouen - the old town with many half-timber houses dated back in 16th century.


Monday, September 22, 2014

Paris - the return and my train journey around France - Part 1

I'm so sorry that I didn't have any review for over a month! Because I'm traveling in Europe, to make one of my dream trips come true - traveling around France by train, visiting some of the most beautiful villages in France!
France and Paris, these two words I already learnt by heart when I was a little kid. Both of my parents  used to speak a perfect French, when they were not in peace, my mom argued with my dad in French, not to let us understand.
And then my turn - I also studied in French school but...as my destiny turned into anther way so all of my university's years and later the long years of my career - nothing related to this country, to this language! My French was deeply sleeping in my mind, but I never forgot those images of Paris from my old school books, those names of provinces or cities, or small towns or rivers that our teachers forced us to remember by heart!

              Hotel de Ville - early in the morning and the famous Notre Dame de Paris not far from here!

Monday, August 11, 2014

The stories about my three sticky rice's street vendors

When I was a little boy, one of my favorite morning meal was the sticky rice, I can even list down now where I used to buy this popular breakfast. Let's me start with the newest story.

The today's story 
I have no idea how long this nice couple, selling sticky rice here, in Ton That Tung street, near to the junction of Bui Thi Xuan street. It could be 20 years or even more, but my first time to buy from them was around 10-12 years ago!

            

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Riding a bicycle across Phong Nha...

Who follow my blog, still probably remember last April I came back from my lifetime adventure in Son Doong cave...That was simply amazing, I have no words to describe, and no any photos or video could tell you what I really saw or felt in there. I'd love to recommend anyone who could go, just go. It's worth much more than whatever you can imagine!

Today I just share some photos I took before heading to Son Doong. It was in Phong Nha Ke Bang, 40 km away from Đồng Hới. I was there in mid April, the weather was perfect but a week later, after the caving expedition, I felt very hot, probably because I still obsessed with the cool air in the cave!

              This photo was taken right after I arrived to Phong Nha, standing in Oxalis office. 

Monday, July 28, 2014

Big noodles with snakehead fish (bánh canh cá lóc)

It was the first time, after almost a decade, I was traveling with my old colleagues-friends. It was a big fun and we all realised - we were the same as in the old days but without the stressful work. I wonder why it took us so long to make time and to travel together?
This time was the birthday party at our friend's place - a farmhouse in Dong Nai. We had a long day, from early morning to late at night, to share all kinds of stories, to laugh and to remember the golden moments in our life.

Our friend's house located by the lake but unluckily we couldn't use his boat due to the falling of the water in the lake and the boat motor ...in the maintenance! Anyway we found another things to enjoy there - having coffee at a quite big and nice place, eating out while waiting for the big party in the evening.

We tried the "big noodles" with snakehead fish - opposite the market Vinh An in Trị An, in Saigon we have a plenty of popular places where they serve big noodles (I used to call it "udon") either with a knuckle of pork, or with crab...but with fish, snakehead fish... it was my first time!

                   Big noodles with snakehead fish - bánh canh cá lóc in Trị An 

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

The traditional bánh xèo at vegetarian restaurant - Liên Hương

I just wrote my first preview on my probably first vegetarian meal at my old colleague's restaurant last week, and yesterday with him I decided to discover another place, famous for their vegetarian noodles and vegetarian "bánh xèo". Whenever I think about vegetarian cuisine, ingredients...I always limit myself within certain dishes that I really love like the deep fried tofu covered in chopped lemongrass or my all-time favourire pumpkin soup with banana, sweet potato, peanut cooked in very tasty coconut milk. I know there is a long list of vegetarian dishes but I didn't expect what we  tried yesterday at Liên Hương - their signature dish - "vegetarian bánh xèo".   

           Vegetarian bánh xèo - looks exactly the same, the dipping pineapple sauce was amazing

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