T and T's mother cooks lunch almost every day. I brought her some purple potatoes before we left for Nha Trang and yesterday she made purple potato soup with shrimp to go with this pan-fried fish. She used to cook for a living. She is amazing. The thing is that I never see her cook or eat; the food just magically appears.
Mom, these shirts are yours. (Yes, T and T insisted on THREE shirts for you, and they chose the material. Which one do you like best? They have a clear favorite.)
This is my lovely seamstress across town (not to be confused with Sweet Seamstress), Thu Ha. My mom had a shirt copied three years ago and loved it, so I took the same shirt and had it copied three more times. This seamstress is a master copier, but she can also take a picture of a dress and your measurements and execute a fitting perfectly.
Yesterday Trinh washed my hair at Salon Mimi, and since no one was there, we chatted for over an hour. As I'm walking back to my hotel, she rides up behind me on her motorbike and asks me to join her for lunch. We ride helmet-less through the alleys to a fish soup stand and she buys me lunch with her tip money. Seems you can't do anything for anyone in this neighborhood without getting it back in some form.
The soup is definitely the best I've had, ever: shrimp, squid and fish balls topped with thai spinach and other greens.
Here is Huang saying good morning:
He is wearing a hat because it is "so cold" this morning. Actually, the weather has been great ever since Sunday, which was miserably hot. So lucky.
Last night Thanh took me to Cho Lon - Chinatown. Because Tet is nearing, everything is Tet-related. About fifty of these shops line the streets; everything is yellow and red.
I met four former students at Yogurt Space last night (yogurt, ice cream and donuts have taken over this city in the last few years): from left: Linda, Justine, Alex and Jack. They look exactly the same, except they are a million times more beautiful and handsome - these kids are now 10th graders. I will go to the high school on Tuesday to see all of the others (except that many of them are now in the US).
Josh, take note: Upper Left Apparel has gone international!