In Vietnam every stone seems to have its very own story. Like the two majestic chicken shaped rocks in the world heritage Ha Long Bay. These kissing rocks are said to resemble two lovers facing each others for eternity. According to the the old tales, the bay itself got its name Ha Long (descending dragon) from a family of dragons who left Vietnam after saving the country from invaders. Above these colorful stories however, lies Vietnam's sorrowful history of violent colonization and war.
Besides its troubled past and rich culture it were the people and their daily life that moved me the most on my journey throughout Southeast Asia. Especially in the far north of Vietnam, like in the small town Sa Pa with its adventurous toddlers and kids trading handcrafted goods in fluent english. Kids who already had to contribute to their families income by helping their mothers in sales or their fathers on the field. It's been these dark eyes and these sad frowns that still haunt me when I think of Vietnam as well as these proud looks and innocent smiles between a never ending stream of motorbikes, between the busy merchants in shops and markets, between these green hills and those mysterious rocks. All which seem to have a story of their very own.