Ngunye Retreat and 2 Adeles in Nam
Trip Start Dec 31, 2006
11Trip End Jan 17, 2007
Map your own trip!
Show trip route
Well, on this Merry Christmas, I am contemplating the journey to come. I've been making plans and getting details of specific locations to visit from my aunt. Both my mother and my aunt have been helping me receive a cushy landing in Ho Chi Minh City by hooking me up with their contacts (our extended family in VN and some drivers, and other services.). I've been warned by my family, don't eat fresh veggies, only eat fruit you can peel, and drink only bottled water. My aunt who is a doctor gave me some pills should I get sick. Last time I went in 1998, I didn't get sick (knock on wood), so I anticipate the same result this time around (knock on wood, again). It's been almost 10 years since I was last there, and I've heard the country is much different. I hope so.
Vow of Silence and Fasting
Before I go, starting on the 28th of Dec., I will be going on a Buddhist meditation retreat to do a practice called Ngunye which includes a vow of silence and fasting over a 4-day period in my neighborhood in Brooklyn at Diamond Way Buddhist Center (where I've been practicing at since May). The type of retreat I'm doing is a purification practice and will definitely clear my mind and body before I take off to Vietnam. The retreat ends on Dec. 31st., the day I leave for Vietnam. This will be great. Teale Failla, my director of photography will be accompanying me on this trip. I hear New Years on a plane is pretty rockin'!
The 2 Adeles
A friend of mine used to call me "Parallel-Adele" for I was always doing two things at once. Little did I know this would foreshadow my encounter with a second woman named Adele Pham who has a parallel identity as moi! She has a Vietnamese father and an American mother. She is in the Media Studies graduate program I graduated from at the New School and she is going to Vietnam today, Dec. 25th, to film! She is from the westcoast, Oregon, I believe. What are the odds?!!!! So we met and talked and we have a lot to relate with one another. There's a short film in this somewhere... Adele Pham is going to Nam to film her father going back to Vietnam since he left in 1976. What an incredible story that will be.
Okay, well, the next time you hear from me, I'll be on the other side of the world.
Peace, love, Merry Chanukkah, Merry Kwanza, Happy Christmas, and Seasons Greetings and Happy New Year!