When I first learned about El Nino in middle school, little did I know that years later it would affect my very own cooking blog! We've been having a difficult summer here and been dealing with heat exhaustion very often. At first I thought it was just us, but our strong fisherman neighbors who are Hoi An natives also complain about the heat this year. I can't remember the last time it rained. There's thunder storm almost every day. The air is thick and sultry and the sky is stuffed with heavy grey clouds. It just doesn't ever rain. My husband noticed last year that pouring rain flooded the streets every time he finished washing our new scooter. This year, he does that rain ritual every couple of weeks lately and no raindrop has fallen yet. I still cook every day. But for survival purposes I try to minimize my time in the kitchen where the heat steams up like a burning cast-iron skillet on my face. Imagine doing barbecue at a summer noon in the middle of a desert. That's why I haven't been able to shoot or videotape any recipes recently. On the plus side, I got to spend more time shooting still-life images and editing old photos in the archive. I used to take so many photos in one vacation that I only got to touch them one year or two later. And it's always nice to do so as memories are all coming back vividly throughout the editing process. This week I'm sharing photos I took last June during our short family vacation on the Oregon Coast. It was the first time I'd been to a beach that was so cold in the summer, but it was nice because of that. Everything there was vivid but calm; the sound of the wind and water only made the scene quieter and dreamier. Now, it's time for me to start dreaming and reminiscing of cooler days!