Last Saturday, after twenty two hours on the Reunification Express, I finally arrived in Dong Hoi. I can’t believe it was over a week ago–the days since then have flown by, filled with getting to know everyone at LSN-V, getting to know the city and refining the goals of the work I will be doing here. Everyone at LSN-V is extremely welcoming and I already feel like I’m a part of their team.
Dong Hoi feels like a small beach town compared to HCMC, though the motorbike is ubiquitous here as well. Today I toured around the city with my new office mates, Kim Hoa and Giang and came to realize that riding on the back of a motorbike really is the best way to see the city! I also got to try some traditional Vietnamese dishes: the first, a sweet bean soup served chilled in a coconut milk base is a common snack in Dong Hoi. Later we stopped for another local specialty–rice pancakes, also served cold, topped with shrimp powder and spicy sauce. Both were delicious and I am happy to find more vegetarian food since many of the traditional dishes are made with meat.
I am looking forward to another busy week at work. On Tuesday I will be attending workshops for two of the new communes (villages) in Quang Binh province. LSN-V is expanding into new communities and I look forward to getting out of the city and meeting with the people who are most affected by LSN-V’s work.
I have also been trying my hand at some video editing since video profiling is a part of my work here. I shot the video below on the **VERY BUMPY** train from HCMC to Dong Hoi. Despite its many flaws, I have decided to include it here since it offers a glimpse of Vietnam’s beautiful countryside.
Posted By Gretchen Murphy
Posted Jun 14th, 2009