Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Korea friends visit Cat Ba!

As a few of our friends from Gwangju contracts were up, they stopped by Cat Ba and Halong Bay on the beginning of their journeys through Southeast Asia.  Caitlin and Justin were the first to arrive and we rented a boat for a day and a night to cruise around Halong Bay.

Justin tries his hand (s and feet!) at deep water soloing. 

It's feeding time at the floating fish farm.

Kelly arrives after a storm delay and a detour to the north. We are rad on motorbikes. I kind of want one when I get home. 

Enjoying some afternoon bia hoi and Justin cleans the mud off Caitlin's leg by spitting water on it. 

On Saturday, we went Lien Minh, a village on the island where a lot of the climbing is located. We didn't get to climb long before we got shut down because the cliff is in the middle of lease negotiations. We spent the rest of the day lying in hammocks and trying to slackline. 

This boy was very enthusiastic about having his picture taken and taking our cameras to try his hand at a bit of photography. I now have many photos of this water buffalo and his friend.

Trang's family was visiting Cat Ba from Hue. We were really lucky to be invited to a big dinner in Lien Minh with Slo Pony folks and all the people that help them here. Trinh and Nha facilitate climbers at Butterfly Valley. I teach their son, Tuan. Also, Quang and his wife. Quang is a very important man around Cat Ba and owns the boats Slo Pony uses for their bay trips.  This dinner involved a food and a lot of homemade honey rice wine! 

This is Dinh and Vu. They are Trang's younger brothers and Slo Pony rock climbing guides. I'm teaching them English and I just love them! They're really great guys and super cool, just look at Dinh's hair. (He's only 20, but I just found out he was a hair stylist before getting into rock climbing.)

The honey rice wine was flowing and Trinh and Slo couldn't help from dancing!

Caitlin is getting a Vietnamese lesson from Tuan, also a really great young man that I'm teaching as well. 

This is Trang, Dinh, and Vu's youngest brother, Vinh. He is the cutest (and sneakiest) thing ever. Whenever my back was turned, my rice wine glass was suddenly full again.  Usually, I want to steal children under three or four years old, but I would steal him. 

Here's a group shot of our extended Vietnamese family dinner. It was really a great night and I'm glad our Korea friends got a chance to share it with us! 

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