Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Our new home: Da Nang

So after a very strange sacrament meeting by ourselves in our small, glittering hotel room (you never realize how many songs and prayers are involved until you have to sing/say them all with only 2 people and no music as everything we had was packed), we were off to the airport to travel to our new home in Da Nang. After freaking out some of the workers with our large luggage we met some of the awesome Aussie friends from the tour the day before on our trip through the airport (and we even found some M&M's there and we got them to celebrate, sadly they still look better than they taste). After a somewhat bumpy plane ride we were greeted with the best view ever - this is what it looks like outside our hotel window: 
Not so far from home, eh? The mountains and the beach are amazing, I only wish they didn't make me miss the horizon of Utah a bit every time I see them - the zaggy lines on the top just don't look the same. At the same time it makes it feel more like home. The weather is drier than HCMC and it is hotter I think, but it rains every so often and some days are more tolerable than others.
The trees here are huge and amazing. They are big and beautiful and we still don't know why they paint the bottoms white sometimes.
This is me on the Han River, which separates the city center from the peninsula on the east. The locals are out on the river every night to exercise and have fun with family and friends, but during the day it is pretty deserted (because it is hot!). 
Here's a view of the bridge at night. It is called the Song Han bridge and it is the main symbol of Da Nang. The lights at night change colors and patterns, it's pretty neat.
Here's a view of the street outside our hotel on any given night. Going out for drinks with friends is a popular pastime, and little cafes set up a lot of chairs and tables and people are out socializing for a while after dark - which isn't too hard to do as the sun sets around 7PM.

Here's a sight you see at almost every little restaurant or even in a house, though we didn't see them in the hotel - it's a gecko! They love to sit under the lights and eat the bugs (so we love them very, very much). This little guy was in a yummy vegetarian restaurant our friends showed us. 
Here is what we ate for breakfast after making a crazy crazy trip to the local western-style supermarket - The Big C. I've never been so claustrophobic in my life as we went at the worst time of the day (right after work) and there were TONS of people there. It was hard for me as we had a hard time finding things and then there were lots and lots of people and not very much food that was recognizable other than Oreo cookies. (We have been there since and it was better, we just happened to be lucky this time). We got some crackers (it says whole wheat but there is a "whole" 3% bran added back into the batter :P), some amazing Guava french-style jam, some rambutan and asian pears, and some weird little yogurt drink things that tasted pretty sour so I figured they must have some kind of probiotic content :) It was good all in all and we were very excited to have some good food. We have also tried the local Phu (a noodle soup with a broth base usually with some meat and veggies in it) shops for breakfast and lunch. It's a different place to get used to but it more quiet and a little less crazy than the big city and it is much more beautiful.


Sherri said...

I think the food would be one of the hardest parts of living there. I'm so not an adventurous eater. I think I would like where you live better than HCMC too. Glad you could share. :)

Tabitha said...

I bet they paint the bottom of the trees white so they reflect more at night and people don't run into them - I've seen similar type of things done before - and those trees are HUGE!