JC.jpgTook a week-long trip to Northern Vietnam. The first stop was Sapa. 27 KB  
Fog.jpgTook a hike from Sapa town, high in the cloud covered mountains, down into a nearby valley. 15 KB  
Lau_Chai.jpgIn the valley was a H'mong village known as Lau Chai. 19 KB  
Lau_Chai.jpgIt was obvious that tourists (many of them Vietnamese) came through often, it was still nice though. 31 KB  
Lau_Chai.jpg 36 KB  
Lau_Chai.jpg 43 KB  
Lau_Chai_JC.jpg 15 KB  
Tuey.jpgThis girl was going to school. Check out her gold tooth! She later found me back in Sapa and convinced me to buy some (rather nice) crafts from her. 47 KB  
Clouds.jpgSapa had the most dramatic clouds I have ever seen! They would sweep through this valley and turn a hot day into a cold day in a few minutes. Really exciting to watch. 11 KB  
Clouds.jpg 19 KB  
Kids.jpgFound a couple kids riding an oversized bike around the pond in Sapa (nope, its not on the L.P. map). We ran around a bit, took pics, etc, but I wouldn't get on the back of the bike (1 person : 1 bike is definitely a western concept). 31 KB  
Ruou.jpgThese young adults were chugging rice wine in the cold and invited me to join. It was great, but 1 small cup turned into 10 before I finally convinced them I had to stumble home. 34 KB  
Hmong_Woman.jpgI was sitting in the park, cutting and pasting things into my journal when this woman came up to sell me stuff. After she realized I wasn't going to buy, she smiled, sat next to me and started to embroider this pillow cover. It was really nice to just site there silently working on our projects. 45 KB  
Cat_Cat.jpgWalked to another village near Sapa named Cat Cat with Kien, the manager of my hotel. Oh, I was the first American to stay at the hotel and for several nights, its only guest! So it was just Kien and I. 63 KB  
Cat_Cat.jpg 46 KB  
Cat_Cat.jpg 44 KB  
Cat_Cat.jpgChicken in the sunset. 11 KB  
Cat_Cat.jpgDramatic mountains as we climbed out of the valley. 12 KB  
Head.jpgSapa Market. 60 KB  
Feast.jpgMet some other travelers - Aileen (Irish), Said (Dutch/Moroccan) and two Swedish backpackers. Later that night, they all came to my hotel because they liked the Kien so much. The hotel owner, Kien and I all cooked up a feast! 39 KB  
Lai_Chau.jpgRented a jeep with Aileen and Said and we drove to another more remote town named Lai Chau. 25 KB  
Mr_Hung.jpgAnh Hung, our over-anxious driver and his military jeep. 63 KB  
Lai_Chau.jpg 25 KB  
Said_Aileen.jpgPicture of my companions coming up the road. 30 KB  
Lai_Chau.jpg 29 KB  
Rice_Wine_Family.jpgWe were exploring a suspension bridge and stumbled upon this family's hut. We turned around to leave but they called us over and insisted on drinking a few shots of wine. The little bit of Vietnamese I had picked up made were vital as they spoke no English at all. Yes, I know I look crazy, but I just chugged several shots of flammable "wine"! 50 KB  
Lai_Chau_Field.jpgFinally an actual pic of Lai Chau. The valley floor was beautiful. 33 KB  
Lai_Chau_Sunset.jpgMy companions slept through the sunset. 13 KB  
Coffin.jpgAnother swastika. Talk about contrasting cultural meanings! 50 KB  
Thit_Cay.jpgVillager selling a dog to a store owner for Thit Cay (dog meat). 43 KB  
Lai_Chau.jpgMain Street in Lai Chau. 35 KB  
Pet_Ducks.jpgA woman taking her ducks for a "walk" in the river. 49 KB  
Lai_Chau.jpg 34 KB  
Jackfruit.jpgYum, I love dried jackfruit! 67 KB  
Aileen.jpg 34 KB  
Lai_Chau.jpg 13 KB  
JC_Asleep.jpgI think Said took this while I was sleeping. 23 KB  
Lai_Chau.jpg 17 KB  
Lai_Chau.jpgCloud filled valley on our way back to Sapa. 18 KB