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What A $25 Hotel Looks Like in Vietnam

Traveling for a year means a lot of planning, a lot of fun, but also living on a budget. Sometimes budgets are meant to be ignored (like all rules, right?) but you still need to have a budget to know when you’re going astray. Otherwise the trip might need to end too early when the green runs out! Hotels so far take up roughly 20% of our budget. We’ve stayed in a range of hotels from $3 a night in Banaue, Philippines at our cheapest (which we actually loved for its... Read More

Sometimes We’re The Attraction

Mostly, we are the ones taking pictures of locals in whatever country we’re in, trying to capture something we want to remember or share, like five people on a motorcycle. But every now and then we find people taking pictures of us. Most are too shy to ask us to take a picture with them, but sometimes we get approached. It’s fun to have the tables turned. In Cambodia, this soilder on leave wanted to take a picture with purrdy me wearing his army hat. In Vietnam, these... Read More

Farmer’s Tan

Women go to great lengths to cover up from the sun in Southeast Asia. It’s not unusual to see someone wearing a mask, hat, long sleeve shirt, gloves and long pants while picking rice in sun so brutal that in shorts and a t-shirt I’m sure I can feel the sun’s rays literally burning my skin. From what I understand, the sun isn’t reserved for the summer either. They live with it’s scorching power year-round. Covering up happens in all the places we’ve... Read More

Motorbike Madness

According to our guide, Saigon is home to 5.6 million motorbikes and 7 million people. Even if that number is exaggerated, motorbikes are clearly the primary form of transportation in Vietnam. The country is supposed to have as many as 20 million motorbikes total. By comparison, America had 6.6 million registered motorcycles in 2006 .  Keep in mind, America has 4 times the population and most motorcycles are used for leisure. That many motorbikes make every alley a road, every... Read More

Tran the Pigeon Trainer

In the center of one of the biggest roundabouts in Saigon, Vietnam is an equestrian statue of Tran Nguyen Hai. I couldn’t help but wonder what notable accomplishment won Tran this prominent place of honor in a country with countless leaders of rebellions against the Chinese, the French and America. We checked Lonely Planet and discovered that he was the first person in Vietnam to use carrier pigeons. Look closely at the picture and you can see a pigeon in his hand. I think... Read More