I have been in Da Nang the last couple of days. This lovely coastal city that was once a French colonial port is outlined with beautiful sandy beaches. I splurged a little this time, which comparative to home wasn’t much, and got a room with a different kind of  view.

Diving into the warm waves, strolling along the oceanside..it’s been rough:)

Coracle fishing boats

Here on these beautiful beaches I reflect a little on the culture of this extrordinary country. The first thing I noticed upon my arrival to my first hotel was an alter in the doorway-showing respect and reverence for their ancestors.

Three widely practiced religions here are Buddhism, Taoism, and Confucianism-sometimes grouped together and referred to as Tam Giao.

The cultural values are entirely evident in their day to day life. I have a personal belief that happiness comes when we live congruent with what we value so it is refreshing to see it so overtly present here.

Other than crossing the road I have yet to feel unsafe. Every person I have come across has been friendly, repectful, and modest. The younger generation I’ve met all speak to their value of education, family connection and tradition-never in isolation of one another.

Food here is a conduit for generations to come together. No ‘drive-through’s hastily eaten as we rush our kids to their game or practice’.

So their vendor stands wouldn’t pass the food standards and regulations back home- guess what- raw food that likely had sat outside all day before it was cooked didn’t kill me.

And so what that stop lights and cross walks mean nothing here…I still made it across unscathed.

And so what that entire families squeeze on the back of a scooter without helmets-riding in the back of a pick-up truck was one of the highlights of my childhood!

All this to say, life in its simplest forms, is a happy one. One that isn’t bound by material  pursuits or unnecessary regulations. Follow the natural order of our values and we will never be disappointed.