© 2012 monica Just the Two of Us

Which Route Should We Take? “Same-Same”

10 days into our month long Island escape and we could be more happy with our decision of taking some R&R and the ever so precious “stability” that we miss when we’re running around whole cities for only days at a time.  These 10 days have been busy: I went through midterms completing 5 papers and catching up on some accumulating reading.  Oscar has wrapped up one of the largest projects he has landed this year.  What did you think? All play and no work…

A typical day actually does not look like this for us.

This picture more accurately describes our weekends :)

A typical weekday begins at 9:00a.m. with a homemade Vietnamese coffee and a bowl of cereal with fruit.  I usually start with checking my email and planning my to-do list for the day/rest of the week.  Then the reading begins.  Highlighter is out and working till 2:00p.m. when we stop for a very reasonable and delicious lunch.  We’ve taken a liking to the lemongrass chicken and rice dish served at a close by restaurant with an Aquafina to accompany it.  Our headaches the first couple of days taught us to drink bottled water at every chance we get.  Lately I’ve been changing it up by ordering coconut water, which is served by sticking a straw directly in the massive coconut shell.  After lunch we work till 5:00p.m. and then it’s off to the beach for a little water jogging and water strength exercises all mixed in with a little horsing around.  By 6:00 we’re showering and finishing up all our business for the day and getting ready for dinner.  We’ve found a great seafood restaurant at the local nightmarket, which is a five minute walk away.  Our favorite is pepper-rubbed tuna fillet with steamed rice.  Served in the aluminum foil it was grilled in we happily eat for 4 Euros a person.

Now, our weekends are a different story!  We choose a beach at a different point of the island to explore and we’ve found that the adventure usually begins with how we get there.  Thank God for Oscar’s 3G WIFI internet on his phone.  I’m not sure where we would be now without it…

Along the way we run into scenes like this

This past Saturday (March 3rd) we made the bold decision to ride our moped down to the Southeastern coast to spend a day at what is considered to be the most beautiful beach on the island.  Sao Beach.  There are two routes to get there: along the coast or down the middle of the island.  We asked a local which was the better way and were told “same-same”: bumpy red dirt roads.  So we chose the coastline drive.

We took route A and decided to come home on route B…..yeah….Route B was a paved road almost the whole way home…that would have been nice to know!  I guess better late than never.

Now for a trip like this at 10:00a.m. with sun beating down and all the red dirt dust being kicked up; I wear a pair of light cotton pants that I picked up in Hoi An with the only light jacket I have…they happen to be the same color (total coincidence).  My point is that I pretty much look like a paratrooper. Which I’m fine with because I do not want to turn into a lobster by the sun or get covered in dirt dust but it makes for some really funny photo ops.  Here is one example below of a river we passed on Route B. I must say Oscar looks pretty snazzy with his Hawaiian button up too!  Sometimes backpacking doesn’t allow for the best fashion! But that’s one negative to a hundred positives.

The rest of this post is dedicated to our day at Sao Beach.  Forgive us if we got a little camera happy with each other.  But TRUST me if you were at this beach your wannabe moment of being a Victoria’s Secret Model or Hugo Boss Model would come out too!  We finally gave in and had fun with it.  Below you will see a few samples from our photo shoot ;)

When we first arrived went to the only resort on this beach and rented two wooden hammocks I think we stayed for 10 minutes until we opted for something a little more remote we did not want to surrounded by loud Vietnamese families, we wanted a little piece of virgin beach to ourselves.

So we from this.

To this.

Oscar indeed has been doing some soul searching and found a very impressive artistic side to himself.  He has been framing the most beautiful pictures since we began our trip and our day at the beach proved to be another successful day for Mr. Photographer Oscar.  I may be just a little partial since I love the man so take a look some of his most recent work yourself.

Here are three photos of his.

We’ll be walking and all of sudden Oscar is crouching low somewhere in his own little world.  But I love seeing his photos at the end of the day.

I think this little guy was one of Oscar’s favorite little discoveries of the day.  But I’m pretty sure I’m still his preferred model.

After all this great photography we had worked up an appetite.  So we chose the restaurant with the best view. Crab fried rice with the local white fish with a tomato salsa.  Yum!

I sent Oscar to the corner during lunch but I think he was enjoying himself…what do you think?

After lunch we found a little shade and played in the water, took even more photos of each other, marveled at the powder white sand, and then wondered how we were ever going to be sand-free again.  The sand was so fine that it would stick to our arm hairs.  We could walk 50 meters out into the sea to actually fully submerge ourselves and ride the waves, but you ask what did we do with those 50 meters…well, we used them for our photo shoot of course.


I know I mentioned Oscar’s new found talent but I must toot my own horn also.  Look at some of my recent work below!

Not bad, huh?

It gets better…

This one I really love of him.

We ran into another American and his cute Vietnamese wife who offered to take our picture together.  He continued to pose us as well.  It was fun to meet such a friendly compatriot.


This next photo was for my mom.  She keeps asking me to take a picture next to a palm tree.  This one is for you Mom!  Love you!


I got a few more shots out of Oscar.

One last headshot…you can do it boyfriend!


We stopped because Oscar did this.

It was definitely time to rehydrate and head back to reality.  So we stopped to for a little coconut water at the best Cafe in town!

You should have seen the knife this guy used to hack it open all while smiling at us.  The two chairs and table seemed to appear out of no where and there we were. Our own private cafe.

As you already know our ride home went extremely smoothly due to nice paved road and we were back before we knew it!

Great Day At Sao Beach!