The perseverance of the Vietnamese people is unwavering, their spirituality is sincere, they are hyperactive in terms of fitness, and the plant-based foods they consume are pure and divine. Naturally, I chose a week-long mountain biking tour with Cambodia Cycling to rediscover life while riding from Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City) to Vung Tau beach city. Continue to travel wide and never rest on your laurels.
After a 22-hour flight, the plan was detailed but exciting. Once breakfast was complete, we transferred out of the bustling city of Ho Chi Minh to Tan Phu Trung village then rode through the rubber tree plantation to the Cu Chi Tunnels, dug during the Vietnam War. Next, we pedaled from Tan Thanh to Ngai Giao then to Xuyen Moc and Binh Chau Hot Springs to have a mud bath. The team cycled along the coast to Long Hai in transit to Vung Tau Beach City. The last leg featured a coastal view while finishing with a climb up to Nho Mountain to enjoy the sea from inside the arm of the famous Jesus statue. For more info on riding in East Asia, visit http://www.cambodiacycling.com.
Day one of our mountain biking expedition from Saigon to the Cu Chi Tunnels was intriguing. The day was beautiful and sunny, filled with curious kids greeting us along the route and replete with idyllic countryside scenery, macrobiotic Vietnamese sustenance, and traditional education as we conversed with the locals. I burned over 1,000 calories daily, created another indigenous global experience, and met more of my Asian brothers and sisters.
Free yourself from comfort zones and explore the ethos and diversity of global lands and its inhabitants. Assimilate with local customs and traditions while absorbing knowledge through experience. Learn the words of the people, smile, wave, and contribute before departure. Yes, live the life you love and love the life you live.
Sunday morning in Vietnam was piously awakening and mentally empowering. Riding through a small village town, we stopped to take photos of Pho Quang Pagoda. Our guide asked us not to enter because we didn’t’ have the proper attire. Nevertheless, Buddhist Thorn Chon approached and waved us in. From there, blessings manifested as “The Most High” showed his omnipresent reach. Thorn let us partake in a chanting prayer, brought us bags of fruit and tea, and opened his mind to instill us with his spiritual strength. We held hands, hugged, and laughed. Next, he asked us to return to the Temple to stay for a few weeks to share one another’s worlds. Yes, of course, I replied as tears shed. We will return soon!
As I always say the best way to explore a new country is by hitting its streets for a 3-mile or plus run. Get lost on purpose and use your senses like honeybees to find your way back to the nest. But I was most excited when I stumbled upon this massive outdoor park that attracted the diversity of Ho Chi Minh City through one commonality: exercise!
Pure and fresh brown rice bowl in Vietnam to compliment our watermelon juice. Always seek that which is healthy over that which demises.
Nomadic explanation on why we chose Vietnam to MTB for the 5th Annual Nomadic Journey.
I love kids, and this Vietnamese crew was at Sunday school when we rode by and changed one another’s perspective. I spoke a few words in their native tongue, and they replied in English. It was pleasing to connect with the Vietnamese youth. Continue living life, people.
Spreading Vegan Power from the US to Vietnam. Of course my Plant Based dietary balance helped me MTB 100 miles across the countryside.
Here’s a simple message of LIFE after completing the 100-mile MTB journey from Saigon to the Ba Rja-Vung Tau Province nestled by the water. One Love!
* A Note on the Vietnam War
Neither side wins in war. As exciting as today was, it was also sad and disturbing after we visited the War Remnants Museum. Learning of some of the torture tactics was sickening, especially the tiger cages and teeth pulling. All for what? Greed, ego, and power. These lost souls in leadership positions need to listen to the prophetic words of Robert Nesta Marley or Ethiopia’s Teddy Afro.