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I am starting to fall asleep but it is not dark yet. The thunderous skies are starting to calm down but the rain keeps splattering on the window and drips intimately like a slow caress of streams down the glass.
The air conditioning is running and the fan fills the ambience with a comforting hum of the modern world. The grey but crisp light peeks through the parted curtains, it is starting to clear up, the sky beyond is pink and fleshy. The trees are rich in leaves and moist in calm and serenity with its green-ness.
I can hear the wind whistling away behind the hotel door on the corridor as if it had somehow occupied the long narrow gateway between the soul and the land. Sometimes it gushes through in a rush, sometimes, knocking over a watering can or disturbs a broom. Sometimes, it speaks in a long, drawn out whistle and along the long corridor, the wind sounds like it moves in a walk, tipping its toes on the marble floor, blowing the walls, doors and window with kisses. It sounds ghostly, it sounds like it has temperaments.
Of no sudden-ness or surprise, the walls start to click and tap, it must be the plumbing, I am the only guest in this hotel. Click, click, click. Mute. Tick, tick, tick. Mute. Tap Tap Tap. The random sounds go on and on combining itself with drips of the rain falling off the balconies and aloe plants; combining itself with the wind.
My eyes start to shut heavy, my body is tingling in relaxation, glad to lay on my side, embracing a pillow, facing the window, breathing in every sound whilst nursing my comfort. And then…
There is a sound of bare feet stamping slowly on the tile floor from behind me. Bare feet pacing melancholically towards me. It is loud enough to make me think that there is someone in the room. My body freezes up and I open my eyes, getting ready to make a sudden turn to see who is behind me. But I don’t. I am too afraid. Instead, I tilt my head to the door slowly – hoping no one would see me. But I see no one. No one is there and the sound disappears. It was probably just a maid, on the corridor.
I turn back, to rest my head and my eyes start to fall heavily once again, as I listen to the melodies of the beating sounds and the footsteps continue.
The sound of bare soles on the tiles start to flap away again, increasingly, until I wake. I move myself towards the door and open it. A burst of light flowed in and startles my eyes. It feels like there is a 24 hour sun, it is still daylight yet it must be the middle of the night- the rain has moistened the green palm trees, making the colour intense and euphorically vibrant. I notice the window looks like it is sweating.
“Hello,” says a small boy, “Were you looking for me?” Stunned as if frozen in a moment, I despair and can not say a word. This is him… “Don’t worry,” says a young girl wearing a traditional Vietnamese white dress with hair so long, it falls down to her ankles, “he is safe with me.” She picks up the young boy into her arms and he waves at me with a tender smile on his face. “We just wanted to let you know,” anchors an old man sitting on a stool with his walking stick, “that you have nothing to worry about.” “Goodbye,” says the girl.
Like someone had just suffocated me, I wake in need of air and I take it in like it is my last. The drops of rain and the air conditioning sounds continue on but the footsteps had disappeared.
Written freeflow, as taught by Creative Writes on a flight from Sai Gon to Da Da Nang This hotel is called Romana Spa & Resort in Mui Ne, Vietnam near Phan Thiet. I often stay in this lone hotel in the outback, far away from civilisation. However, the corridor now creeps me out.