We're trying desperately to catch up on our posts--so the next few will be predominately photos. Hope you don't mind. Here are a bunch of pictures from the tourist trap of Hoi An. It was beautiful (probably why it is such a tourist trap). Hoi An is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is supposed to be pretty close to what ancient Southeast Asian port cities would have looked like long ago. Minus the gaggles of white folks and merchants selling souvenirs, I suppose. Without further ado, the pictures:
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It was the first time I had seen a wild monkey. Ashley and I got off the bus, leaving the comfort of air conditioning behind for the insane heat reflecting off the massive amounts of blacktop surrounding the temple. Strangely, everyone's first thought was, "I need to go to the bathroom." My first thought was, I need to get back on the bus. But maybe that was just me.
Now that we are finally settled down here in Sa Pa, I feel like I now have enough time to sit down and recap our travels thus far in Vietnam. We arrived in Ho Chi Minh City on the 20th of May around 10:00 am. The temperature was 99 degrees Fahrenheit with 60% humidity. When we stepped out of the airport it was like walking into a sauna! There were tons of people hanging out around the entrance. Taxi drivers, bus drivers, hotel greeters, and tour guides, but mostly families waiting to be reunited with loved ones. As we made our way to bus 152, people were staring us down like zoo animals. I think their eyes were mostly fixated on Sophie. Vietnamese people adore Sophie for some reason.
To close off the summer season with the best of the best, we decided to backpack Coyote Gulch. It was probably one of the coolest places I've ever been; towering high walls and breathtaking narrows. Every turn of the canyon had a new and amazing feature that you couldn't help but photograph. We hiked about 31 miles in and out and it took us about 3 days and two nights in the dessert. Talk about big difference from hiking and camping in the High Uintas.