Friday, 10 February 2012
Saigon and Nha Trang!
Well hello again everyone! Am actually at a computer today, so maybe the blog can be a bit more in depth - at very least the spelling should be better! So last time I wrote Sean was transfixed in the Arsenal Blackburn game. Couldn't tell you what happened with that as I was in the land of nod before half time, just how I like it! Was a bit wary of Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) as the lonely planet book (aka our bible) said that it probably has the highest crime rate in Vietnam. Obviously I then translated this to mean there would be masked robbers lurking around every corner (Granny if you are reading this, don't worry, there weren't!). It was actually a really nice place to be, found a hostel with a little pagoda in the room - not sure why but we liked it - and loads of good places to eat around the area we were staying in. Went to the Vietnam War Remnants Museum on the first full day - was very one-sided and full of propaganda but seemed fair enough to us! I didn't know anything about Agent Orange, and there were kids in the museum doing crafts that have been born in the 1990s with all these disabilities. Apparently the museum closes for an hour and a half in the middle of the day, so we were unceremoniously kicked out at 12pm, and told not to darken their door until 130pm. We went and found a lovely little park to shelter in and sample some of the bakery's work - lots of women in mini dresses with people following them round and taking pictures of them by trees??? Then went back to the museum and finished nosing around. After this we went to the Reunification Palace, half followed some tours around and listened in then went to get a view of the city from the helicopter pad (standard). Some Chinese teenagers took a shine to us and spent a while posing for pictures with us as the stars - they never really said why though. Must be our beauty and exoticness. On the way home we went to the market and Sean got some Abercrombie shorts for 4 quid and I got a polo shirt for 2 quid. Am saving it to wear until I smell a bit better though! Had ANOTHER beer with dinner. Am becoming quite a little party animal apparently! Monday we had lots of time to kill so went and sat in the park, Made friends with a Vietnamese girl who had only been teaching herself English for 6 months and was fluent. Made my attempts at Spanish in High School look a bit weak if I'm honest :S She thought it was very funny that Vietnamese people want to be pale and I was trying to get a tan, but then she also thought Sean was a 21 year old German so she was a bit off with her guesses. That night we got our first sleeper bus. Quite an experience! I slept most of the way although the seat/bed things were made of plastic so I was quite stuck to them. To be honest it was a bit of a squeeze for me, so Sean never stood a chance! Turns out I must be an Asian as I am NORMAL SIZE here! I can see the tops of things and whats going on in the world around me! Don't think Sean slept the whole night (being taller than me), and then when we got to Nha Trang at 6am none of the hostels were open! Saw a little old lady beckoning us down an alley way and showed us to her guest house- really cheap and most importantly had a room there and then! Nha Trang is pretty resorty, a beach haven for a huge number of Russians apparently! Spent the first day being beach bums and the second walking to this Pagoda/ Temple thing, where they have massive statues of Buddha and you can hear the monks praying and ringing the bells - sounded like one of those meditation CDs they used to play in the Natural World shop in Sutton! Skyped both our mummies while we were there, was really weird just chatting and then remembering where we were and how far away we were! Made me a little bit sad just as it made me miss everyone lots. Quite a few people there that I found quite rude, an Australian boasting about starting fights on the beaches in Thailand, and an American girl demanding a waitress who spoke better English than the girl who worked in a restaurant and had already changed her order twice! Luckily, it turns out nobody really wants to make friends with a couple! We are officially uninteresting to fellow travellers. Fascinating to Chinese teenagers at least though, if we ever get really sick of each other! Last night (Thursday) we got another night bus, went with a company recommended in Lonely Planet this time and was much better. Bit more leg room for Seany, blankets smelled like they had been washed, and THERE WAS A TOILET!!!! I only visited once though as I had another traumatic experience - decided to go when the bus was stopped as that was what everyone else was doing. Except that as I went to sit down the bus lurched into action, sending me flying, accidentally pressed the flush button before I had even gone and that then in turn switches the lights off as it assumes you are finished. Am having no luck with toilets. The majority of the passengers were staring at me when I emerged as it must have sounded like I was having some kind of disco in there. I miss English Toilets. Thats all for now, have just spent our first day in Hoi An but will write about that the next time. Hope everyone is keeping safe in the snow and not too jealous of us! Lots of love xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx