In Hue, we visited the famous Imperial City. This was a magical place. Much of the compound had been destroyed in the French and American wars, so there were ruins amidst in tact citadels and temples.
All through the walled in city, the scent of jasmine wafted on the breeze and loud cicadas wailed in the trees.
We loved these windows above.
It was a special treat to walk around the complex totally alone and unsupervised, we just walked where our hearts guided us to. There were few people around, and the quiet of the old abandoned city was soothing. There were moments when Brian and I were walking through ruins that we felt like we were experiencing what Narnia or other magical worlds from childhood stories would feel like. The smells, the sounds, the quiet breeze, the long forgotten emperors, concubines and eunuchs. An echo of a lavish past.
It is hard to explain why, but even though this old city was riddled with trauma and destruction, still I will think of this peaceful, quiet, beautiful corner of the world to calm my mind in future meditations.