A Travellerspoint blog

In the Suburbs of Hanoi

Off the tourist track

overcast 77 °F

We were lucky enough to meet and stay with the Snell family for a few days about 10 km outside of the CBD. Luyen is from Saigon and her husband, Robin, is from England. Their son Nicholas attends one of only two United Nations International Schools (UNIS) in the world. We attended the UNIS spring fair and learned a lot about teaching abroad while sampling homemade foods from the countries that attend UNIS. We listened to the middle school band and chorus and pondered what it would be like to be a traveling teacher or attend an isolated school in a completely foreign country.

What interested us most about Luyen was that she owns and manages a bakery/café/sewing factory that employs disabled people. Her goal is to encourage people with disabilities and build their confidence by showing them that they can still be useful in the work place. We spent a couple half days trying to be useful at the bakery and picked up some tips for starting our own. After a morning in the café we would hop on a local bus to explore. On one trip we ended up at a lake (that reminded us a lot of Greenlake in Seattle) where we found a café with the best mango shake ever!

After our stay in Hanoi we headed North West to Sa Pa via “sleeper” bus, however we weren’t so lucky this time… not only was the driver training for the large vehicle version of F1 racing, but the seats didn’t lay flat and seemed like there was only enough leg room for an Umpalumpa! It was still a fun adventure and we were able to score some seats together.

Posted by Robin-and-Kevin 10:00 Archived in Vietnam

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