Vietnam, you might want to sit down for this.

I’m not sure whether to file this one in the ‘It’s a Small World Department’ or in the ‘Curious Coincidences Department,’ but I’ve learned that longtime Charleston friend and fellow international traveler Ida Becker is directing her jet-setting self at Ho Chi Minh City this week, scheduled to drop in on Thursday. She’ll arrive here exactly halfway through a year-long trip around the world, a milestone it looks like we’ll be celebrating together. Her trip sounds grand in the Victorian tradition, but it’s not exactly a pleasure cruise. The whole shebang is part of her cleverly conceived documentary U-Truth Project, which I mentioned briefly in a post here a couple of weeks ago. She describes it better than I can:

In an age when neighbors are disconnected and societies are fractured due to religion, creed, politics, race, geography, socio-economics, and countless other markers, the U Truth Project seeks to discover commonalities within the human drama that supersede surface differences.

Armed with little more than a camera, a laptop, a copious supply of anti-malaria pills, and a tentative route, adventurer Ida Antares Becker is circumnavigating the globe and asking the people she meets to share one statement of truth.

The U Truth Project is a web-based photo documentary that chronicles the responses.

Join the journey here.”

How long she’ll be in Saigon is either classified or TBD, but I’ve been told to keep my travel schedule open and my sightseeing clothes at the ready. I’m particularly interested to see what kind of wardrobe Ida’s bringing with her. She’s a high-octane Charleston fashionista who does not suffer style refugees like me gladly. Unfortunately, I’m still sporting backpacker duds while I wait for a package of clothes my old housemate Will is sending from Japan.

She’s going to scream when she finds out the only shoes I own are flip-flops and a pair of hiking boots.

* Ba-dum-bum. Sorry about that headline. I was in a rush and it was too good to pass up.

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