Flying on a Jet Plane

I am writing this post on the plane, only hours after my departure from an area of the US known as Silicon Valley. Normally, it is within the zone that is considered Mediterranean and therefore quite mild; however, it’s still smack dab in the middle of winter and still fairly cold.

A heavy hailstorm hit my house earlier today and the sound of the pounding hail stones on my roof skylights were so loud that they scared my dogs. For a moment, I worried about my car, parked outside the driveway, but a quick check afterwards showed no signs of damage.

Lucky for me, the hailstones were not huge, merely marble-sized, but there were so many of them and the storm lasted so long that they crushed all the new pansies I had just planted outside in front of my house.

But I am about to exchange all that for a completely different climate and environment.

It’s strange to realize that I am leaving a world that is cold, wet, and a dreary shade of grey, in exchange for glorious balmy 85° sunshine, and a sultry 75° at night (that’s 30°C and 24°C respectively).

This is not exactly a vacation trip. I am traveling back to Vũng Tàu to take care of a few small details having to do with my condo in Vietnam.

As expected, properties don’t maintain themselves, and they can’t be left unattended for too long. It was not an ideal situation during the COVID years (2020 – 2022) when I could not return to Vietnam due to visa restrictions.

Although I had a property management system set up in place, which alleviated much stress on my part, I still needed to personally take care of certain things that had arisen during the two years of my absence.

Now that traveling visas have been resumed, I figured this was the perfect opportunity to return. It would be after Tết and before spring break, during which time, vacationers would flood the area where my second home is located.

I have set aside some time for visiting a few of my most favorite temples in and around the Vũng Tàu area, so within the next couple of weeks, I’ll detail a few highlights of my travels.

I’m also on a book-buying spree to hopefully snag a few of the more esoteric books that I cannot get in the US, most notably those ancient Viet texts that are still untranslated and in their original formats.

I always prefer to read the original texts written in Vietnamese, as opposed to one that has been translated into English. I have always found translations lose shades of greys that can only be obtained via context and understanding of customs and traditions.

This will bump up my library collection in a very meaningful way, which reminds me…I have to update my bibliography page.

Until then, my friends. I’ll see you in the next post.


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