Last 10 days in Hoi An...

Hi all

So for those who have been following, this is my last 10 days in Hoi An.  It is always sad when I come to the  end of my time here.  I have had so much fun here this year and have cemented lifelong friendships, my home away from home will never be too far away from my thoughts.

Now whats been happening?  One of the highlights was going to Tam Ky to watch some of our kids compete in the provincial swimming championships.  It was amazing to see the kids race and the enthusiasm of the sport teachers.  Of course the Hoi An kids did very well followed closely by Duy Xuchen (one of the other areas we teach at).  Have a look on Swim Vietnam's and Water Skills for Life  Facebook for photos of the day. And for those who are thinking it must have been a professional event like in Australia, well no!  You have kids competing against each other who are of different ages ie One of our Swim Vietnam teachers kids who swims amazing breaststroke is 8yrs old and was up against 12yr boys!!  Anyway it was a vast improvement from last year Jo told me as everyone finished their races.  Last year only 1/2 managed to finish so this is a vast improvement.  Just goes to show how far swimming has come in one year.

So I have not been in the pool teaching until last Saturday and helped Jo with the expat kids.  The money she raises from renting the pool and doing these lessons helps support the swim program.  I have had a great time showing Jo how I teach these little kids back in Australia and I have even done a few baby classes!! Back to singing all those wonderful songs (wheels on the bus, zoom zoom zoom were going to the moon, ring a ring a rosy just to name a few).  On Friday Jo Trung and Vinh came to my homestay so they could do the Assessors course online for their Austswim.  They needed this to be able to sign new teachers off once they have completed the course and training hours.  It was an interesting morning as Jo and I had to explain some of the questions in simple terms and thanks to google translate as well, the two of them are now assessors as well as presenters of Austswim Teacher of swimming and Water Safety.  So proud of these guys they have worked hard and have done really well.

Apart from this I have been saying my good byes to friends here and have had many coffee's and dinner invitations. I was fortunate enough to be invited to Chien's grandparents house to enjoy dinner with them and all the family.  What made it really special was that when Chien come to pick me up, and his son was with him, and as we were leaving the heavens opened up... OMG! you should have seen the down pour but this doesn't stop things here so donned a poncho and with motorbike helmet on, the three of us were riding through the rain and the enormous puddles on the back of the motorbike to our destination.  Its all about the experience isn't it??   I was told later that this is what it is pretty much like in the rainy season (we are at the beginning of it now).

That brings us to Saturday night.  We had a small farewell for two of the volunteers Marita and Lloyd who have been here with me for the past 6 weeks at a local restaurtant just across from my homestay. We had a nice night with plenty of beer drinking and mawt hai ba's going on. It was also a goodbye for me (and see you next year Tanya) from the teachers but rest assured there will be plenty of opportunities to say farewell to them all over the last few days here in Hoi An.

Well what an adventure this year.  So all of you who might like to come next year I am sure you would have a blast.  There are plenty of other things you can do to help Swim Vietnam other than teaching in the pool so let me know, it would be an experience let me tell you.

See you all too soon


PS I forgot to mention, Chien and Trung will be arriving in Australia Mid February and spending time in Melbourne with Paul Sadler Swimland and coming to Sydney to stay with me for a few days.  Very exciting indeed!!

Tanya Carmont
President, Water Skills for Life Inc.
Ph: +61 (0)438 828 725

The last two weeks….

It has been really humid and hot here except for today, overcast rain and high 20's and this is forecast for the whole week.

So I am coming to the end of this years journey and I have really enjoyed it.  So many adventures and fun times.  So just a couple of highlights, teaching in the pool has been really so much fun.  The kids just get it and they learn so quickly.  Jo has been in with me to see how I teach the expat kids so I was able to show her and give her some tips.  Yes its is different to teaching the Vietnamese kids, expat kids are just like the kids at home always want to either be under the water or playing and not paying attention.  Its all about keeping control of the class ha ha!

Some of the kids from our swim program are this week swimming at the championships in Tam Ky which is really exciting for Swim Vietnam and of course their families. The kids don't swim in age groups but on times which is interesting as you end up with all ages in a race.  If they make it to the national championships then it is age groups. Wishing them all the best and I hope to see them in action.

Michele from Dingo Deli and one of my friends here in Hoi An took me on a "get Lost in Hoi An" tour on the back of her motorbike.  It was soooo much fun.  Bush bashing through the rice paddies and ending up who knows where.  Even she got lost a few times!  As soon as you go even 1km form the centre you are in farmland and then you can turn a corner and bang another lot of houses going up.  There is so much building going on even from last year.  Our end stop was GTV Sports bar run by Micheles husband Gordon had a well earned beer and G & T we had been out bashing for 5 hours!! Nice day and much needed break.

At the moment the weather is pretty unpredictable and take each day as it comes.  I have been unwell this week with a sinus infection but all good you can buy medication over the counter here no need for the doctor!  Feeling much better today.  My Homestay family are very kind people and when they know I was unwell have been feeding me lemon drinks and rice soup which has been helping me feel a little better.  Even this morning as I had not got out of bed Nga came and checked on me and said that I must each rice soup for breakfast and yes it has made me feel a lot better together with the medication so should be back in the pool at the end of the week. Rest rest and more rest is what was needed.

Well it is certainly going to be sad to leave in a weeks time but in a few weeks my friend Van from Green Bamboo cooking school will visit us in Oz for a few days and in February Trung and Chien two of Swim Vietnams teachers will be visiting as well, so will look forward to showing them the northern beaches (these two hate to have a beer or two!!).  I am looking forward to as many of you to meet the guys they are too much fun and are very dedicated to Swim Vietnam and what they stand for.

See you soon...

Water Skills for Life