As Phil mentioned we are a mere 4 weeks away from leaving for our family adventure to Vietnam! But who's counting? It will take at least 25 hours (Gasp!) to get there if none of the three flights are delayed. (ha! We're flying united -_-) We leave from Toronto early on December 8th and fly to Chicago. From there we hop over the pond (my first time) to Hong Kong and then to Ho Chi Minh City In Southern Vietnam which Phil still refers to as Saigon. When Phil left Vietnam just over 32 years ago he left on an old barge with his parents, 5 brothers and approximately 1500 other people packed in like sardines. His two older sisters stayed behind. They were married already and settled. It was 1979. The communist government was encouraging anyone with Chinese decent to leave the country. As it turns out Great-Grandpa Tieu was chinese so Phil's parents decided to pack up their six healthy boys before they could be scooped up as soldiers and take their chances with the open seas. (i know, i too was shocked that he hadn't traveled all this way just to find me) Anyway, to make a long story short (extended version to come), they left on a barge, barge hit a reef and was damaged so they were stranded on a beach for 20 some odd days where they ate nothing but sweet potatoes, barge was fixed then beeched in Hong Kong. They were herded into a camp where they stayed for 3 months until representatives from Canada came along to offer a home in Ottawa to 4000 Vietnamese refugees. Lucky for me, Phil's family was among them. So, if you were doing the math, it took them approximately 4 months to get here. Thank god it will only take us 25 hours in the comfort of airports and airplanes, not to mention the access to a varried diet......not sure it will taste better than the poatoes but there will definitely be more variety. And hey, I'm travelling light.....only 2 kids instead of 6. Am i making you dizzy yet with the positive spin I am puting on the whole travel thing? Ahh, it's all part of the adventure. Bring it on!