Less Baggage Less Stuff Less Procrastination

A different kind of travelogue. As an avid young traveller I often wondered what would it would be like when I got older, gathered commitments, created children and accrued debt. This is what it's like.

Grand Tour 2015 #13; Dalat & Hipsters without Beards

Dalat is Cool.

It’s all kinds of cool. It has cool architecture. Cool climate. Cool history. Cool overload.

With cool overload comes hipsters.

In truth Dalat had much more Vietnamese tourism than it had foreigners like us. That may have been down to the multiple holidays, I don’t know. Just like in western cities like Melbourne or Vancouver the interaction between asian and western cultures brings about its own curious style. I love the products of this. In the hands of the young happening folks of Dalat there were a small number of little shops and cafes that would grace any city.

My favourite was the ridiculously well located “Bicycle Up”


It’s hard to catch the scene on a little pano shot but “Bicycle up”  not that hard to find at the lower end of the main tourist street in town, it’s just squeezed in to the start of an alley and it was the graffiti that caught my eye first.


The drinks were cool. The Decor was imaginative. The coffee was great but the coffee is great everywhere in Vietnam. There was no over priced craft microbrewery beer though. Or beards. But give these guys a little time and they’ll figure out a way to do it. There is a “Fresh Beer” culture in Vietnam. I saw it more in Hoi An and up north in Hanoi so I’m sure the Dalat dudes will be getting their hops on.IMG_3559

Needless to say the detail that sealed it for me was the tiny frame bag on this old single speed road bike. You’ve got more than half of my nerdy obsessions rolled into a ball of cuteness right there.



7 comments on “Grand Tour 2015 #13; Dalat & Hipsters without Beards

  1. Sheamus

    We dont have any “policemen” in Ireland neither 1st, 2nd nor third, we have Garda Siochana which translates ‘Guardians of the Peace’, a hotly disputed title espeicaly among the travelin community, a minority group of Oirish people who dont like livin in houses, (a bit like yourselves).
    John Joe died. Yeah, we all wondered how he slept through the whole Milo incident, what with all the sparks and spuds flyin about the place and the squeels of Milo, sure it wasnt till the next day Mary noticed it was gettin a bit whiffy in the Pogue (its never that fresh at the best of times) that it dawned on them that JJ had gone to check out the great pub in the sky. JJ belived that there would be free porter for the likes of himself and sure whos to say hes wrong? He had no money and one church was as good as the next as far as JJ was concerned so we were havin a bit of bother findin a restin plot for him. Well after a good session in his honour we took him down to the GAA pitch an buried him under the goal posts. He’ll be happy there, he loved a game of hurlin.
    Speakin of hurlin, we had another reported case of ‘freindliness’ this time in the midlands and it was a group event, yeah. Two arch rival teams played a game of hurlin all the way to the final whistle without a drop of blood bin spilt.
    Now Mr. Legoman, put that in your pipe and smoke it.

  2. Sheamus

    Sure of course your havin trouble crossin the street, what do you expect? the Vietnamese cycilist is not goin to take a Lego family seriously. You would have exactly the same difficulty here in Ireland (certainly west of the Shannon) you’d have no trouble crossin the street but you’d be standin at the bar a while beefore anyone would serve you.
    There’s a lot more goin on here than there is there by the look of it, Milo is forever up at the Auldfella’s place. The long acre runs down the back of his few fields and he’d love to get his hands on it. And you know what Mr Legoman, i dont care anymore, for two reasons.
    Firstly, cos the brother (he’s a real holy Joe, with his head firmly embedded in the Auldfella’s oh-yo) is goin to get the farm. Im too fond of socialisein, give me a creel o Turf, a pint o porter, a wee bit o didle-e-di-do an im happy as a pig in shite.
    And secondly cos there was a time when you could be proud to be a farmer in Ireland, farmers were the caretackers of the health and wellfare of the land. Since the 1960’s successive Govs have imposed ‘modern agriculture policy’, not only here but across the whole ‘developed world’. With grants and subsities and a strong sales pitch they turned caretaking farming into short term greed farming, robbin the land of its natural nutrients and poisionin the wells and streams with chemicals and sprays.
    Now all the available water in Ireland is not fit for human consumption and the present Gov has to impliment a massive water processin network which is goin to cost Zillions.
    Now if im not mistaken the rape and plunder of our seas and oceans- so you or i or whoever can have the perfect fish (“cos your worth it”) is subsadised.
    Its like payin for the saw that cuts the branch we’r sittin on. Why do we keep givin these people our money? They are killin our Planet.
    Im allowed back in the Poguemohone and i think Mary has the hots for me, i think she gettin the nestin urge, shes 35 (im 38), so to hell with Milo, the Auldfella and holyjoe, with a bit of Oirish luck i’ll be a publican and i’ll run the freindlist pub in Ireland. So if you ever find yourselves in west Clare drop in for a pint, you the missus and your lego kids. I promise i wont leave you standin at the bar.

    • dougalynch

      Didn’t I tell you to keep one of those eyes on the County Council.
      I am all in favour of taxing people. I am almost totally against what the taxes get spent on. I live in Australia. “Nuf Said!”
      As far as I can work out the present Fascist Government spends more money torturing children in Concentration camps than it does on Foreign Aid.
      Don’t get me started. I’ll be needing a drink.
      And you are right; it is very hard to get served in a bar when you are less than 5 cm tall even if your are bright yellow.
      In Vietnam its much easier. Stand anywhere for more than a few seconds and someone will offer you a coffee and when that happens you can ask them for a beer.
      Nonetheless I wish you the best of luck with Mary as I hope to be in Ireland sometime soon and am more than a little afraid of getting knocked into the “spittoon” while I yell at the top of my yellow plastic voice; “A pint sized pint of Guinness please!”

  3. Sheamus

    Correction: i like pigs, and that popular expression i used isnt actually true. Its another example of modern agriculture practice, pigs are forced to live in horrible conditions and are forced to eat a lot of stuff they would not choose to eat if they were living in the wilds. They in fact keep their poo seperate from their social and feeding area.

    • dougalynch

      My son was born in the year of the Pig.
      Long live Pigs.
      How come everyone loves that “Charlottes Web” book and “Babe” (the cute pig movie) and keeps on eating the poor little swine?

      Questions. Questions.

  4. Sheamus

    Torture? Nuff said?
    Not near nuff is what i say. Dec 9th 2014, does that date ring a bell for you Mr. Legoman? It was a wet cold winter morning here in west Clare and i was trying to get the stove lit and cooking a pot of porridge and then the fella on the radio said it – confirmed, Shannon Airport (just down the road from here) was used as a stopover point for their ‘rendition’ flights. Well i just sat down and cried and i couldnt stop crying for a long time. Some of us suspected that this might be the case but now it was confirmed. When i finaly dried up i went down to the pub to replemish me liquids, i wasnt good company that day nor the next. The day after that when me head cleared i decided to get ready to join the 100s of 1,000s i expected on the streets screaming for accountability.

    Where am i?
    Excuse me is this Ireland?

    I couldnt belive it, no one, in numbers of any consequence, seemed to notice. The usual suspects were there of course, crying in the wilderness,
    But the rest of Ireland had more important things to do and do you know what that was Mr. Legoman? They were desparately trying to get enough money to feed their families as the Gov had taken most of it to poison the water and were now demanding more to unpoison it.
    Do you know what i heard one appointed Minister say ” its the law, you will have to pay”, and the taxpayer were paying for him to say that? were paying for his house, his car, his pension.

    Iv watched this time and time again. The Gov gets elected, they go searching for an opportunity, they make a ‘Law’, if you break the Law you pay a fine or go to jail, however if you have enough money you buy a licence which will get you past the ‘Law’.
    Nuff said? Not near nuff.
    The important stuff, the stuff that enriches our lives as careing, loveing humans is constantly sidelined by meanless and pointless bullshit and we are so steeped in this cesspool now that we are unable to see that we are digging the graves of our grandchildren.
    “Dont get me started”? – Too Late!

    • dougalynch

      More serious subjects these are.
      All worthy.
      But is it the taxes that are the problem. Railing against that is not the solution.
      It’s pissing said taxes up against a wall (or more likely up against an innocent bystander) that’s the problem.
      It’s the corruption.
      The nepotism.
      The kick backs.
      The impunity.
      That’s the issue.
      Why did they ignore all this supposedly sacred Neutrality and get involved in an ugly part of an ugly war?
      Someone somewhere in Ireland made a tidy profit out of keeping someone somewhere in America happy.
      Lots of people got rich.
      None of them paid much tax on their riches.
      It’s a Class War I am afraid.
      Except it’s all going one direction.
      In fact things like One Direction may as well be another tax to keep the money out of the pockets of the masses.
      The role of the masses is to consume rubbish and grow profits for someone from the elite, the E”stablishment”.
      Lottery? Same.
      Football? Same.

      Bread and Circuses.
      Stale bread and stale circuses.

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