Mui Ne is a sleepy beach. If you are looking for night life, rocking bars and clubs you won’t find it here. The shops and restaurants tempt you to stay awhile and relax. Everything is so friendly and welcoming from the restaurant greeters calling hello, the taxis slowing down to see if you want a ride and even the soft and soothing sounds of the Vietnamese language which is not as harsh, loud and abrupt as Mandarin. People don’t seem to be arguing all the time and speaking loudly so you can’t help but overhear their conversations.
If you get bored there is a little adventure to be found with kite boarding (very expensive about $150 US/ hour) and motorbikes (cheap $10/day) for rent. The sand dunes are a short day trip where many people go and explore. We really wanted to see the dunes, but didn’t make it. Missing out makes us want to return. Long ago some good travel advice I learned was to take things as they come and enjoy the journey…. leaving things undone, or 1 more thing to see and do is OK because it is a good reason to make you want to return.
So what did we do? You must be thinking oh yawn… 3 days of nothing… do I have to read about this? Well even in quiet times interesting things happen. I did spend 3 days by the pool reading and having the occasional happy hour cocktail. John and I always cooled off in the pool and got a little bit of a tan. The days were hot with a slight ocean breeze, so we didn’t want to venture too far… besides within minutes you would be drenched with sweat. This reason alone kept us close to the pool. Evenings were cooler, so we strolled the street and enjoyed great food for cheap! We ate at Good Morning Vietnam Pizza twice because it was so yummy. We also found this German place that was part of Charm Villas. They had great schnitzel and the best French Onion Soup I ever had outside of France. We were OK with this pace since we wanted an escape from the cold drab wet winter we were just coming out of. Work had been more hectic than usual and I needed the R and R to recharge me to get through the last few months before school was finished.
I woke up early in the mornings just as the sun was rising and wanted to go out and get some sunrise pictures. A few
people were out strolling along the edge of the waves and even swimming. It was so peaceful and relaxing as the surf gently rolled in. I snapped lots of shots as the sun rose into the sky and left its shimmery hues of yellow and orange behind before the heat and brightness set in. In between shots I looked around for crabs, the beach was littered with holes and escape routes with evidence of little claw marks that left interesting patterns scattered about. Occasionally the clear coloured crustaceans would skitter like a flash into a ready hole, so it was hard to snap a photo of the camouflaged little critters. Out on the water fishermen were already returning with the daily catch. Small blue boats bobbed in the waves. Smaller ‘teacup’ boats were scattered on the horizon a few hundred meters from shore. They reminded me of an episode of the Amazing Race when a task was to row one of these small round boats to a point and back. One of the contestants found it hard and complained about the ‘teacup boats’ and the image stuck in my mind.I watched the single fishermen, or occasionally a pair, expertly guide these perfectly circular boats by oar across the waves. The sea was still a bit rough, so this was not an easy task. I took some shots, but my little point and shoot camera couldn’t zoom in as much as I would have liked. Down the beach some were being pulled out so I went to investigate. Once the teacup boat was close enough to shore someone was there to help them carry the boat away from the waves. Quickly they got to work and once in position a tarp was placed on the sand and the nets were laid out. Then by hand they (I assume it was the fishermen’s wife and sons) began to pluck the fish out of the tangle of the nets. It seemed so primitive compared to the large fishing trawlers and nets that over fish most of our waters today, but it was simple and effective. It brought me back to my childhood when I went out with my Grandfather and later my Uncle who were commercial fishermen in Eastern Canada. They too didn’t have a lot of fancy equipment, often homemade, but what they
had was very effective. I remember my uncle having a simple wooden frame with fishing line wrapped around it with numerous hooks. He would lower into the water and when he pulled it back up minutes later with an expert flick of the wrist the fish were flung into the boat. Soon we were ankle-deep in fish and I was covered in scales (yuck!).
I enjoyed the morning exploration and got up early again to watch the sun rise and the fishermen with their daily catch. The resort was quiet as the workers watered the gardens and cleaned everything before their sleepy guests awoke. In the morning sun the colours were more vivid which made it great for taking pictures of the beautiful gardens and flowers. The resort was almost full with guests, but still felt peaceful and relaxed. This morning time was even more special as I had it all to myself.
Stay tuned for 1 more post of Vietnam…