Flora and Fauna

Flowers and animals make me happy. The pop of color on green leaves. Cows. Fruit on a tree. A perfect palm on the shore. A cat in the sun. Even a bare tree lightly dusted in snow.  These things make me love life and remember how lucky I am to live mine.  And as we enter our third month of winter here in Shenyang, I’m missing those little pops of color.

On a recent trip to Vietnam, where all things were in bloom around us, I smiled at the random flowers on the side of the road, each of the palms in view, chomping cows and sunning crocodiles.  On every trip we make, and every day I step outside in familiar surroundings too, I search for beauty in trees, flowers, animals, nature.  It makes me smile.  So let me share a few smiles with you.

5 Million Motorbikes

We had the great fortune to travel to Vietnam a few weeks ago.  We spent 10 days in Ho Chi Minh City, the Mekong Delta and Mui Ne.  We kicked off our trip in the crazy, beautiful HCMC; home to 9 million people, and 5 million motorbikes.  It is one of the craziest cities we’ve ever been in, and one of the most beautiful.  It was only surpassed by the beauty of the river towns and the delta, and a few calm, peaceful days at Mui Ne.

For me, Vietnam was a trip of feeling.  It was the sights, sounds, smells, tastes and more in such an amazing country that has been through so much.  So I give you some of the sights and stories in these photos.  And a wonderful phrase that I hope to remember every day of my lucky life.

I think the real miracle is not to walk either on water or in thin air, but to walk on earth.  Every day we are engaged in a miracle which we don’t even recognize: a blue sky, white clouds, green leaves, the black, curious eyes of a child — our own two eyes.  All is a miracle.   Thich Nhat Hanh