Once upon a time a family of five left their home and set sail for far away lands….After a long journey they arrived in the land of the Dragon people…..

It was not what I expected. There were Vietnamese workers building expat apartments that sprouted like unruly weeds. They lived on the sidewalks in “houses” made ofΒ  tarps and a hammock. While wealthy expats were tucked safely behind gated walls away from the makeshift movie theaters, street hawkers and food stalls, outdoor markets and the sleeping dragon….

I couldn’t help but wonder where are the Water Buffalo, and rice fields….? Where is the Vietnam I had conjured up in my dreams before we came? I was determined to find it…and find it I did in the back streets of Cholon, and markets of Ninh Binh, on the streets of Tra Vinh, and in the mountains of Sapa, in the boys shelter and at Tien’s house, on the junk boat in Ha long and along ancient city of Hoi An, in the temples and on trains, the dragon stirred behind the smoke of the incense, it wriggled, and shook, it slithered and roared. The dragon was not sleeping he was waiting to be found beating in the hearts of her people glittering in the eyes of his children. The dragon is waiting for you to come out from behind your walls leave your drivers atΒ  home walk the streets, talk to the people, travel the land and you too will catch a glimpse of the scaly red tail whipping around the corner, smell the smoke of their fire burning in the air, and see the marks of their claws in dimmly lit alleyways.

Our time here has been humbling, awe inspiring, frustrating, and bizarre. I have seen things I could have never imagined a year ago. I have cried, and laughed, been amazed and appalled but most of I have grown and am grateful.

So thank you Vietnam for all you have given us. The land of the dragon people has left her mark.

You maybe be thinking “this sounds like a goodbye story… I thought they were staying another 6 months…” well you would be right it is. After 5 weeks of traveling this summer we decided it was time to leave. So, Philip went back to the states for work and the boys and I went back to VN to pack up and move. That was last week, today we are mid-move no longer in VN but not yet to our next home…

I will leave you with some pics of our time in Vietnam while you wonder where or where have the Curry’s gone….

I will give you a hint it’s not New Zealand and it’s not back to the states………

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