After graduating from university with a very good degree, I rewarded myself with a solo trip to Hoi An’s ancient town in Vietnam. Perhaps it was a miraculous arrangement, as this is where my love story began. During a pellucid morning with the fresh scent of the dew lingering on the meadows and the sun having just emerged to send its first rays across the sea, the breeze gently stroking skin, I met Loan. She was running across the beach of Palm Garden Resort where I was staying. Her unexpected “hello” as we were meeting for the first time made me a little embarrassed.
I happened to meet Loan when I was having breakfast on the veranda of Terrace Restaurant. Ah, like me she was a visitor of Palm Garden Resort. Interesting! We arranged to join a bicycle tour around Tra Que Vegetable Village and enjoy local specialties together. And of course I did not miss out on inviting her to a romantic party at Palm Garden Resort on Saturday afternoon. The space was decorated with colourful Hoi An lanterns, a varied buffet that offered an array of dishes from regional delicacies to fresh seafood was on offer and we could enjoy the wine and listen to the uplifting tunes of a Filipino band, all of which made our weekend evening a memorable delight. Although we did feel blue when we had to say goodbye the next morning to continue our daily lives.
Returning to Palm Garden Resort after 7 years, many things have changed – from the trees to the suites, but memories of the first meeting flooding back still leave me feeling thrilled. Loan still accompanies me, but in the role of the mother to our 2-year-old son. The sunrise still shines on the sea, the scent of grass remains the same and our love journey continues.