The last month or two has flown by quickly and I’ve (apparently) not found much time for updating this blog. So this post contains an overview of where we’ve been and what we’ve done in Asia so far, and my next few posts will have some diabetes-related updates.
After enjoying Europe, we flew to Beijing in mid-October to start a tour of Eastern China. After seeing the Forbidden City, we spent 3 weeks working our way south to Hong Kong. Along the way, we stopped in Datong (to see over 51,000 stone buddhist statues carved into caves), Pingyao (to see an ancient town with intact city walls), Xi’an (for the terra-cotta warriors and some great food), Zhangjiajie (for the national park that inspired Avatar scenery), and Guilin (to cruise down the nearby Li River).
By far, my favorite site was the Li River, which surprised me. I expected the Terracotta Warriors or the Forbidden City to be our favorite, but the Li River blew that all away. It was really stunning, and an unexpected gem.
Overall, we enjoyed the sites in China – so much interesting architecture and history. The food was delicious, and it varied highly by region which I found fascinating. It was also not oily like American Chinese food, which made it easier to bolus for, without all the fat.
However, to be fully honest, I was a bit put off by how dirty the country was, between the city streets, the habits (such as everyone spitting in public everywhere) and the public restrooms. After three weeks, it kinda got to me and I was glad to make our way to our next destination.
After China, we flew to Hanoi, Vietnam and met up with Peter’s mom, Carole. The three of us visited Ha Long Bay (a bay full of thousands of limestone islands), Hue (the imperial city of Vietnam), Hoi An (preserved port town), Mui Ne (a beach town) and finally Saigon.
We saw a water puppet theatre show and a Vietnamese acrobatics show, we learned a ton more about Vietnamese (and U.S.) history, we had custom clothes made in Hoi An, and we thoroughly enjoyed a ton of delicious Vietnamese food, even trying our hand at cooking some of it. And we celebrated Thanksgiving somewhere in the mix.
I loved Vietnam. It was such a diverse country with so much to do and see. The people were extremely welcoming and it is such an easy country to travel through. I had a blast there and wouldn’t hesitate to recommend it.
After Peter’s mom flew home, Peter and I moved onto Phnom Penh, Cambodia. We spent a few days there checking out the Royal Palace, a genocide museum and the Russian market. We compared notes on Cambodian coffee vs. Vietnamese coffee, and celebrated my birthday.
We brings me to today – we’re currently in Sihanoukville, Cambodia (a town name which I’m still learning to pronounce). It’s a beach town in southern Cambodia. We’re at Otres 2, a remote beach here with all of 6 places to stay and 4 restaurants. We haven’t put our shoes on in days and our biggest decision is when we want to swim each day. After all the moving around for the last two months, it’s perfect.
More to come in my next posts on my A1C while traveling, diabetes gear and buying insulin abroad.