Cecilia Anh Van crossed nearly 4,000 km, passing through 32 coastal provinces of the country in 99 days, calling the trip a journey to overcome fears.
Cecilia Anh Van, real name is Nguyen Thi Hong Van, 43 years old, currently working as a coach (coaching – for clients to discover and perceive themselves). Traveling across Vietnam has always been her dream since she was young, but the biggest barrier is her fears.
“I couldn’t get over it to go,” she shared. The journey of going to school and going to work, responsibilities in work as well as in family life made her many times put aside her dream. But at the end of last March, when domestic tourism opened, she decided to return to her unfinished plan and fulfill her dream of traveling through Vietnam, with most of the journey being solo.
Starting from Hanoi, Ms. Van moved to Mong Cai city (Quang Ninh). From Sa Vy cape, she followed the arc of the coast, through the northern coastal provinces such as Hai Phong, Thai Binh, and Nam Dinh… and then to the central region such as Ha Tinh, Hue, Da Nang, and Quang Nam. , Quang Ngai … and to Cape Ca Mau at the end of June. Total time 90 days, set foot in 32 provinces and cities, totaling more than 3,380 km. From Ca Mau, Ms. Van continues to ride a motorbike to Kien Giang and the last stop is Phu Quoc island. On her father’s 27-year-old Dream car, Ms. Van conquered 33 provinces and cities in Vietnam, traveling nearly 3,600 km in 99 days.
After the journey, she found that despite being a travel enthusiast and seasoned when it comes to travel, traveling alone is not an easy dream to achieve. Traveling alone is a precious experience, but it also contains many different fears.
Fear of insecurity
The question Van gets a lot before the trip and is also the reason why many people are most afraid is: Safety.
“Broken car, rain, sun, dark, traffic situation, accommodation, and even the people we will meet on the road, who is right and wrong, how do we know? A lot of people make such assumptions. Those are also the assumptions I make to myself many times, and then delay forever. I am a woman again, if there are any incidents, it is very dangerous, “said Ms. Van.
Then during the 3,600 km of the adventure, the Dream car only had to change the tube exactly once and she slightly repaired it twice. During the whole journey, she only “falls” once due to negligence when walking on the coastal mountain road with many crushed stones. “I travel at most 320 km a day, but only two days like that. The rest I mainly go about 70-100 km a day. Many people do not believe that it is so long, so long. There are few such incidents, but it’s the truth,” said Ms. Van.
On the road, she also ensures her own safety, stopping to rest when tired and not driving at night. The coastal arc is quite safe, although there are some unfinished sections. The new road, quite deserted compared to National Highway 1A, few big cars, cool and poetic. “Currently, cars can’t travel the entire coastal route, but riding a motorbike is almost like following the sea. In the next few years, when Vietnam’s coastal road is completely completed, the movement will be more and more convenient. safer and more convenient. There are not as many risks as I imagined,” she added.
Fear of being alone
During the journey through Vietnam, the “most feared” time was at the very beginning, when she arrived on Cat Ba island. Partly because of the flu, but mostly because of not being used to being alone.
In the first provinces, Ms. Van could hardly sleep, but stayed up until 3-4 am until she fell asleep because of fatigue. Gradually, on the journey, she got used to it and realized that she was not alone, always welcomed by compatriots in all parts of the country. During the adventure, many people loved and sympathized with the dream of traveling through Vietnam, so they reduced many costs, even invited them to eat and sleep like a family.
“Everywhere is home. I meet many people, simple and sincere. When they know my journey story, I am ready to share and help. I stop at a homestay, a hotel, or a homestay. When I was introduced first, everyone was warmly welcomed like family. Suddenly, I understood better the meaning of the word “compatriots”, she said.
“‘Vietnam – a friendly and hospitable destination’ is not a slogan, but a fact we should be proud of,” said Ms. Van.
Fear of lack of money
Many people want to travel, but to meet this, they have to “deal” with financial problems. “I thought a lot about how to be more interesting than paying for this journey myself. And in the end I learned to do what is so common in the West: sharing dreams, about journey, about his reasons and asking for support”.
Van’s entire journey is posted and updated regularly on her website and personal page, in which she has an account number on website for those who love the journey to send their support. The remainder of the money was used by her to do charity work, support reading culture projects and energize the exam season for more than 10 12th graders in this year’s college entrance exam. In addition, she also uses it to support those who wish to realize their dream of traveling and discovering the country and people of Vietnam like she was supported.
Fear of responsibility
According to Ms. Van, many people have to put aside their dreams because family and work are responsibilities that they are not willing to give up. Realizing your dream of crossing Vietnam does not mean giving up your responsibilities. In terms of work, working online has become popular, so, throughout the journey, she still completes her work remotely.
“It’s like a long business trip,” she said. Her family still has regular connections. Her son is in grade 12 this year and her daughter is in grade 9. “The results of their second-semester exams are even better than when their mother pushed them at home,” she laughed. In particular, in the next leg of the journey, from Nha Trang to Phu Quoc, her daughter, after completing the semester exam, accompanied her mother to the end of the journey.
What exactly is fear?
“Fears are unconscious limits we place on ourselves to keep ourselves safe.” For Ms. Van, these are treasures for people to discover themselves, including potentials, limits and dreams. Just recognizing and understanding the value of fear and going through it will achieve good achievements.
“There were times when I thought I had to end the journey early, but then I discovered that wasn’t the case. There were times when it was rainy, windy and sunny, but there were also times when I could stop and rest. And during the journey. the process, no matter where we are, how we are, this life is still flowing, everything is still in place.
This life is still going on like that,” Van said.
Keyword: 99 days through Vietnam to overcome fears