Day 72: Lunch with Mrs Van


It’s amazing what you notice around town when you haven’t got your hood up and your head down to avoid the rain.

This afternoon was like walking around an entirely different town. How had I managed not to notice the Chua Phap Bao Pagoda?

And people said six days in Hoi An was too long? Goodness knows what I’ll finally spot tomorrow.

The previous evening’s torrential rain continued until the early afternoon today. I saw no reason to dash out for another ducking, which seemed to perturb the hostel staff.

At 9am, one of them said: “But it’s not going to rain.”

Lovely people though they are, the team are not reliable meteorologists. I present the following picture to support that statement.

I already had some sneaking suspicions about the accuracy of their predictions so went out with waterproofs. They seemed to think it was odd that I would doubt their forecasting talents.

To be fair, four different weather websites offered four entirely different predictions for this area, so it really is pot luck what you get.

I headed across town, dashing into the Fujian and Hainan Assembly Halls every time a shower started.

The Hainan Assembly Hall which commemorates 108 Chinese merchants murdered for their goods by officers in the Chinese navy in 1851. The emperor had suspicions and acter writing a poem, he had the situation investigated.

I headed back to the Central Market Food Hall for lunch.

Vietnamese food is delicious and I wanted to try the Cao Lau.

It’s the signature dish of Hoi An… made from fresh rice noodles, barbecued pork, crackling, bean sprouts, lettuce, herbs and finished with a spoonful of stock.

Apparently, pub quiz fans, it can’t be replicated outside of the city because… the water used in the dish must be drawn from the Ba Le well which is opposite 35 Phan Chau Trinh Street.

Come for the pictures,stay for the trivia. If anyone does win a pub quiz I will be seeking a cut of the haul.

To be honest… while it is good, I prefer Mi Quang – it’s the fresh coriander that does it for me.

Today, I sampled Mrs Van’s stall.

If you enjoy eating in restaurants where you can see the food being prepared, the market is the place for you.

I watched Mrs Van make my Cao Lau and then prepare the fresh spring rolls, while I was eating the noodles.

I think all of the ingredients are bought fresh first thing in the morning from the food market next door. The smells are incredible.

Mrs Van’s colleague on the drinks counter was keen to share her lunch with me, pancakes and shrimp noodles. She just wanted me to have a taste of Vietnam but I already had my lunch. I wasn’t stealing hers!

She said I have to go back tomorrow for beer.

Categories: Travel, Uncategorized, VietnamTags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

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