Prior to an 18 hour flight to Nha Trang Vietnam, home town of Mi Duong, I rented a bike. After adjusting the seat, I misjudged the height of the rear wheel, caught my leg on it and landed flat on my coccyx. OUCH!!!!!!! Still, I went.
Once MiDuong and her fellow client, Gena Pratt and I reached Nha Trang, our intense touring began with 4 days of swimming in the China
Sea at 5am, marching around the market and Mi’s favorite restaurants and shops.Weclimbed uneven ancient steps at Po Nagar Cham Tower and Nha Trang Cathedral. Stairs had become the bane of my butt ache.
The 95 degree humid weather caused me more grief that my aching ass.
I welcomed our subsequent 12 hour road trip to Hoi An with my 5 caregivers. Nurse Ratchett aka Mi Duong ,who kept me moving at a fast pace; Nurse Jackie aka Gena Pratt who plied me with Campari.; Mi’s mother Thach and sister “Auntie” Kim who nursed me with plenty of food and exotic fruit; and Ni, Mi’s sister, who orchestrated the whole trip like a precise surgeon.
At this point both Gina and I needed a break from our assimilation into Vietnamese life. We checked into the luxurious Nam Hai resort in Hoi An.
Our private compound included a lavish main villa up six bannister-less stairs leading to a sitting room with 5 day beds, wine cellar, decanters of whiskey and our butler, Tua. He led us down a grand staircase down flanked by 2 more day beds a patio with table for afternoon tea (sing this to tune to Tea for Two), and our private pool. We crossed the extensive outdoor and went up to the lower level of our bedroom. So far we had traversed 23 stairs from our front gate and still had not reached the bathroom. Two more sets of 4 more stairs got us there. Oh my aching ass!
Then if I just wanted to fall into bed I could enter the bed platform and tightrope walk along the side of the soaking tub nearer the bathroom and avoid the higher step at bedside. When earlier drunk Saigon Beer woke me, I pillowed my pulsing posterior and sled over the black marble ledge until my feet dangled over the floor. I only had a few steps up that may or may not be lit by a motion light depending on whether the decorative mosquito netting was hanging in its beam.
We thoroughly enjoyed our one free dinner that was included in the $1000 nightly fee. My stay-at-home husband deduced that we were the only guests who were not drug dealers or movie stars. We missed Colin Farrell by a week.
The next day my intensive physical therapy continued with Nurse Jackie aka Gena leading the charge.
We hopped on bikes and rode into a rice paddy, literally. Gena managed to stay on the 7 kilometer path, but I landed bottom down in rat infested mud. My booty appreciated the mud soak and subsequent hosing down by the worried guide. I really didn’t give a
rat’s ass and laughed as Gena described her discovering I was missing.
Now atop a motorbike, clinging to the driver much like the small pink snail I had invaded clinging to a rice stalk for safety. I was transported to a vegetable garden where a 72 -year old woman helped me work on my upper body watering her crop.
I opened my ample hips astride a water buffalo. Gena pumped an 8 kilo fishing net on a upright bike apparatus on stilts and then we both cast out a fishnet for a full body stretch to conclude the physical therapy.
On to the delightful French-founded resort of Dalat. Flowers, flowers, everywhere. In fact they grow all flowers for Vietnam and are beginning to export to Europe. My therapy continued hiking through coffee plantations, silk worm farms and climbing down to elephant falls in Dalat, described as a treacherous, moss covered and often slippery path cut in lava. The author notes seeing several visitors go down on their backside. I did not. I remained erect signaling that the two week endeavor to rid the pain in my butt, had worked.
I also lost 7 lbs and had one of the most marvelous adventures of my life. Special thanks to Mi Duong and Gena Pratt who made everything much more special.