It was Easter this weekend, but that goes by un-noticed by most of the people here in Việt Nam. We had classes as usual all weekend. Xuân came over with some crisp, juicy rosy apples from his family's farm. They are apparently sweeter when the weather is sunny. I suggested that they'd be lovely stewed with some sugar he was horrified! No, No! You eat them fresh!
On Friday night when I got home from work, several of Tony's students were here. They had cooked dinner, so I had the pleasure of joining in - rice and vegetables, omelette and beef. On Saturday morning Tony went to Cát Bà Island with five of them for the weekend.
It was bucketing down when I woke up on Saturday. I had a 9.30am class, but when I rang Mr Cường for a ride he was busy, so I had to walk. Lately I have been walking to work taking the short-cut - via the winding alley next to the house. So I put on my thongs and rain cape and headed out into the storm. But the alley was flooded... 10 - 20cm deep the whole way... I rolled my pants up and waded through, but by the time I got to Lạch Tray I was saturated from the waist down! So I ended up teaching for two hours dripping wet. At least it wasn't cold!
The rain was easing by the time I walked home, so I went the other way and stopped off and had fried rice for lunch. It's a delicious combination with the fresh sliced cucumber. The soup is the broth they use for phở ... very delish!
I enjoyed a couple of hours at home relaxing... a bit of a nanna-nap, then walked back to work for the afternoon class. By then the storm had passed and all the water in the alley had drained away, so it only took me the usual 20 minutes to walk to work and I arrived dry. Another two hour class and walk home and I'd had enough exercise for the day!
I spent the evening blogging the wedding weekend, chatting on skype, watching TV and reading. Very laid back. I had a rude awakening at about 5am... A man was talking loudly out the front of my house. I often hear voices, but they usually are walking past and are gone in a minute, but this loud voice kept on and on. After a while I got up and unlocked my balcony door and went out to have a look... A beggar had collected all the plastic bags of rubbish from outside the houses in the lane and was sifting through them talking loudly to his mate all the while. I couldn't resist taking a photo (though I didn't want to draw attention to myself, so I didn't use the flash). You can see him with his conical hat on , bending over in the middle of the rubbish. Fortunately the rubbish lady came by an hour or so later and the mess was gone by the time I was up and about.
It was Nina's last day today. She is returning to Norway to teach in a school in Oslo - a great career move. This was her last class.
How sad it is that in the west we have given paedophiles so much power that it would be illegal to take a photo like this of a teacher and her beloved students without written permission from each parent and relevant authorities. I am very glad it's not like that here and I am free to enjoy happy snaps with my students!
Sunday lunch was A REAL TREAT ... Roast Turkey, Green Bean Casserole 'n Candied Yams at Gene and Becky's. They invited a bunch of friends over and Becki cooked up a storm. Besides turkey, beans and yams, there was creamy mashed potato, baked beans and ham, cranberry jelly, and a mango 'n jelly 'salad' and loads of stuffing and home-made gravy. Gene was patiently stirring the gravy when we arrived.
A few weeks ago, Emma had mentioned how much she missed having a Sunday Roast with her family, so Gene and Becki had used Easter Sunday as an excuse to put on this feast. Emma's delighted response to everything was a marvellous reward, I'm sure!
There were fourteen of us ... Becki and Gene; Will, Nina, and Emma; Bonali and her husband, Abel, and two sons; Aaron - another Aussie English language teacher from Melbourne who works at Tyndale School, and his girlfriend; and Khánh, Xuân and me. And did we tuck in!
Emma, Bonali, Abel, Khánh, Xuân, Becki, and Aaron and his girlfriend.
Check it out!.... Roast turkey dinner with all the trimmings, American style!!
And it tasted every bit as good as it looks. The turkey was perfectly cooked...
Then to top it all off, Becki had made fruit mince pie for dessert... boy can that girl cook!
And a good time was had by all !!!
With the rest of the day off, it was home with the boys for a leisurely Vietnamese lesson and a gentle afternoon. I finished off the evening chatting to my Katie on skype and reading and that was my weekend!