Sand dunes, people, life …

… One thing I have learned in these two months in Quy Nhon is to really appreciate the small things, what remind me of the so called here “western lifestyle” . Even though I don’t miss the food, the drinks and the smells of Europe so much, there is something magical in actually having a good cup of Espresso. Quy Nhon doesn’t have too many of those places, where you can really get a taste of home and as a guy from here told me “it is a pretty random place for expats” 🙂 It is a 360 degrees turn from the lifestyle in Hong Kong.

I’m sitting at Nguyen Nga Center and slowly sipping my coffee and thinking about the last few weeks. The place itself is an unique mix of a gift shop, learning center for people with special needs and a coffee shop… with actually damn good coffee:)  The Center itself is a one of a kind place in Quy Nhon – by selling different handmade products and through the coffee shop, it is supporting the learning and development of people from Quy Nhon with special needs. What I am looking at is coming here for volunteering here – teaching some basic English to the students in September.

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The last few weeks have been pretty crazy and a lot of unexpected happened. A lot to “chew” and think about. The good thing is that I had chance to spend 4 days outdoors with a group of Vietnamese adults. It is incredible how spending few days out can help you to turn of your mind and stop worrying about all the “life” issues  It was actually my first experience leading a journey here. And it was way beyond my expectations in any possible way. What made it really pleasant was the openness of the Vietnamese group towards new things, learning, sharing and their ability to stay positive and resilient. Even if they could not understand English, it was impossible to stay indifferent to their tries to share their thoughts in any possible way. A really nice bunch of people 🙂

The programming itself here is also a pleasant one – more or less activity driven, it has a nice slow pace and provides space for a lot of reflection, discussion and sharing within the group. The extremely hot and humid weather also pushes for a slower paces. Our circuit is a relatively tiny one, but the landscape and view of the sea is simply stunning. During this program I realized that having a small circuit gives you a chance to do a lot of other facilitation bases things, rather than pushing for kilometres. It was nice to finish the course with the feeling that it actually “made sense” and was a deep experience for the participants.

 

 

Since I have started here this was our third course, what we run as a team. And next week we are starting a two weeks loop all around Vietnam, where we will be doing half-day programs for school students. A great opportunity to explore the country, so I’m pretty excited about it.

It is interesting to be part of something as new as Outward Bound Vietnam. But in the same time being a part of a “baby” organization brings a lot of uncertainty and variables.  Honestly I’m not sure what will the future be, but I am sure that so far I have made the right choice to come here and discover all the new things..

 

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