Born in Vietnam, our family emigrated to the US when I was two. Since growing up in Virginia, I’ve worked in Toronto, Phnom Penh, Bangkok and now Ho Chi Minh City.

My background has always revolved around my love of language. I’ve been a translator, proofreader, teacher, educational manager and now writer and photographer.

As an ENTJ “Field Marshal”, I’ve dedicated my insane and sometimes exhausting focus to traveling. Low and slow. Shabby and chic. I love it all.

As I was telling my friend about an upcoming dream trip around the world (and the sizable chunk of change it was going to cost), he looked at me incredulously. “Think of all the gadgets you could buy with that!” True, travel eats up a huge part of my savings, but looking around my home and seeing the hand-knotted rug that brings back memories of hours of friendly negotiations over milk tea in Kathmandu, or the simply woven grass basket from the Okavango Delta in Botswana or even the soap dish I bought outside of the Tsukiji fish market in Tokyo after the freshest sushi breakfast ever, I know that all my travel memories are priceless. Gadgets come and go. Souvenirs break. Rugs fray. But memories last a lifetime. Those are the moments when you experience pure giddiness from seeing something that you’ve dreamed of forever, or something so completely unexpected…

Thank you for coming along on my journey. Please have a look around the site at my magazine writing and photography. For more of me in my more unguarded moments, “like” Fly, Icarus, Fly on Facebook or Twitter. You’ll hear all about wardrobe malfunctions, catch photos of the weird and wild that is my everyday life in Saigon and see things that you cannot unsee.

And no matter where you are in the world, may you experience endless Icarus moments of your own!

Star Trek Travel Lessons - 2013-03 Oi Vietnam


I’d like to thank all the people along the way who have so very generously helped to make this site what it is, namely web developers extraordinaire Regis Terreaux and Carson Sharein. The beautiful watercolor illustrations you see throughout the site are courtesy of the talented Bridget March. And the handwriting font was a gift from the amazing graphic designer Jeroen ‘JOEBOB’ van der Ham. And to all those who’ve contributed your advice, know-how, encouragement and stories, thank you.

2 thoughts on “About

  1. Thu

    Cuong, I am loving your blogs…and the pictures. Wow, I’m a fellow foodie, and I get soooo hungry seeing those lovely food shots!!Keep them coming…and your ever-so-entertaining articles!!!

    1. James

      Thanks, Thu! As a foodie who wanted to learn more about Vietnamese cuisine, I’ve taken three cooking classes in the past few weeks. Stay tuned for that experience and all the pictures and recipes… This blog isn’t a food blog per se but it sure is featuring a lot of food of late!
      James recently posted..Vietnamese Food On The Cheap — A Photo EssayMy Profile


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