Published on April 29th, 2013


The TravelnLass is an Asian Geo-Rockstar!

O.k. so I’m presently having far too much fun exploring Hoi An this week, and am clearly not inclined to hunker over my netbook keyboard in my hotel room to serve up a veggie-fresh post about it just now, sooo…

Suffice I’ve had the following geocaching post waiting in the TL wings for… goodness, since way back last year when I lived in Ho Chi Minh City.  Just a little ditty about the time I took my HCMC chum (who then wrote for The Word HCMC magazine) out on his first geocaching hunt.

Meanwhile… uh, if you’ll excuse me, I shall be out by the pool… 😉

Honestly, I’m truly not all that crazy about having my face plastered in a magazine for all the world to see.  Even if it IS but a somewhat obscure (by global standards) publication.  But actually, The Word HCMC magazine is apparently quite well-read here in Vietnam.


A traditional Khasak “tubeika”
(suspiciously shaped much like a ger, no?)

When I returned temporarily to Saigon (after a month’s stint milking yaks in Mongolia), I opted to drop in to see my previous ILA teach manager (he’d asked me to please bring him a souvenir from Chinggis Khanland, and I of course could hardly refuse).  The Khasak hat I presented to him fit perfectly (whew! indeed, he looked quite dapper in it, and promised to wear it to every weekly teachers’ meeting).  It was then that I dropped the trifling bombshell that alas, I would not be returning to teach in Saigon after all, but rather, would be moving to Dalat instead.  Blundering forward, I followed up this somewhat unwelcome news by demurely asking him for a letter of recommendation – clearly I have no shame whatsoever).

ANYWAY, all went well and we chit-chatted a bit more, when he suddenly said: “Hmmm, while you were gone, I think I saw a picture of you in The Word magazine. ” OMG!” says I, “That must be the geocaching article!”


Photo by EJ Chung
Beloved Garmin Legend, on the other hand –
forever now lost in the wilds of Mongolia. ;(

You see, before I left for Mongolia a blogging chum that also writes for The Word HCMC, asked me if I’d show him the ropes of geocaching as he wanted to write an article about geocaching in Vietnam for the magazine. Long story short? I met him at a Saigon park one day, and he showed up with a staff photographer. I’d already entered the coordinates for Saigon’s only remaining cache hide into my GPSr, so after giving him a few pointers (about being discreet, checking for muggles, etc.) I handed him the GPSr and said “O.k. – go get it!”

He did.  An easy-peasy magnetic micro hidden on the underside of a largish electronics box in a corner of the park – right under the noses of a gazillion Vietnamese passersby each day.

I could tell my friend was stoked when he found it, ‘cuz he let go the characteristic little “aha!” geo-yelp the moment he spied it. Meanwhile, the magazine photographer was clicking away.  Two months down the road, I’d all but forgotten about the article, but apparently it was published in The Word HCMC (complete with a mugshot of moi) while I was in Mongolia.

O.k. so maybe this doesn’t bump me up to the rarefied rank of bonafide Asian rock-star, but I dare say now even my teach manager (and no doubt, not a few of my fellow teaches at ILA) know about my dubiously sane hobby of scouring the globe for hidden film containers and Tupperware.

You can read the entire Word HCMC article here: The Word HCMC: Cache the Stash


About the Author

Off-the-beaten-path travel is my passion,and I’ve always lived life “like-a-kid-in-a-candy-store” – eager to sample as many flavors as I can. Indeed, my life motto has long been: This ain’t a dress rehearsal, folks!

6 Responses to The TravelnLass is an Asian Geo-Rockstar!

  1. James says:

    I wonder whose handsome hands are pictured holding the beloved Garmin?

    Looking forward to the Hoi An posts. My last visit there was NOT memorable (it was New Year’s Eve and freezing). Hope to have my mind changed!

    • TravelnLass says:

      Gee, I wonder… After all – it was you James, that’s the “blogging chum” that I teamed up with to grab the geo-joy that fine day.

      (btw, that particular geocache has now been found no fewer than 750 times and has managed to survive for nearly 7 years – amazing considering the usual muggle rate here in VN)

      And Hoi An? Yes, yes, some interesting blather to share. But “freezing” you say? In Hoi An??? Uh, I can assure you it was oh so the OPPOSITE (i.e. hotter than blazes) when I was there – suffice I’m ever so glad to be back up here in my beloved cooooool Dalat!

  2. Amber says:

    I spent a few days in Hoi An and I loved it! How hot is it at this time of year? When I was there in about April/May last year the heat was incredible!

    Here are some of my photos from Hoi An, if you care to take a glance:

    Enjoy your trip! 🙂

    • TravelnLass says:

      Nice pics Amber! Coincidentally, I just last night took an outstanding sunset photo tour here (and likewise hope to take a sunrise tour tomorrow morning before I leave). Hoi An is most definitely a very photogenic place.

      And temps? Uh (given that I am a lass who specifically chooses to live in coooool, greeeen Dalat), Hoi An these days (and no doubt most every day) is H.O.T.! Most lovely town, but no way would I ever live here in this heat.

  3. Paul says:

    What a weird coincidence. I had a dream about geocaching, and then woke up to find this post!

    Congratulations, Famous International Cacher of Mystery!

    • TravelnLass says:

      Weird indeed, Paul. I guess we both have that silly game of hide ‘n seek on the brain. You should go out and find (one of the gazillion) boxes there in Seattle, and I… alas, there is but one (near 5 star difficulty I believe) out on some distant off-shore island here in Hoi An.

      P.S. So… in your dream – did you find the cache? 😉

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