50 shades of green, and a dozen mood swings

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—– Đọc bài tiếng Việt —– 

Photos by Anvi Hoàng 

The trek down Mường Hoa valley is what it requires to experience 50 shades of green. From the beginning of the trail to the end: I was in the fog, then the fog was gone, it turned out to be cloudy, then the rain came, and the rain was gone. There was no picture of the rain, of course. There was no shelter whatsoever. We kept walking and walking and walking. I made do with a sturdy umbrella-cum-walking stick; others ponchos. At some point in the rain and after the rain, I found myself on all fours trying to balance myself on the tiny slippery muddy paths that wind around those very gorgeous velvet green hills that soothed my eyes and my soul while my clothes and hands and shoes were getting stiff from dry mud. And yes, everybody (except the natives) slipped and fell. Forget the picture! We kept walking. Then the clouds came back and receded, then the sun seemed to want to come out, and it rained again, then the sun was up a little, then it was shinning bright. Alas!

I was in Sapa, Việt Nam – a paradise for nature lovers.

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As the weather in Sapa changes quickly within a day, the locals often say that tourists can experience four ‘seasons’ a day here: foggy, cloudy, rainy, sunny. In fact, if I pay close enough attention, there could be dozens of spectacular moments for mood swings. I recorded more than half a dozen of them. I’d describe the weather, and you can come up with whatever mood you see yourself in.

From the balcony of my room, the mountain range and the valleys are my everyday scenery. The Fansipan, the highest mountain in Việt Nam at 10,312 ft, is very tempting, flirtatious, or threatening, depending on the time of day. When it is clear and the mountain tops show, I felt as if I could reach out and touch them, as they are literally very close – more than ten miles away. At times when the rain pours, or fog and clouds move in really low, they all become a mystery behind the smoking screen.

Let your imagination roam. Lazy or active, you can really relax in Sapa.

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Mood 1? – Cloudy.

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Mood 2? – Foggy.

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Mood 3? – Rainy.

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Mood 4? – Right before sunrise, crisp air, bare-looking mountain range.

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Mood 5? – Sunny.

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Mood 6? – Sunset, mountains near and far.

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Mood 7? — I can sit on the balcony and look at this all day long.

sapa-21Mood 8? — Where am I?

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