Been spending lots of today, Day 9 in Saigon, Day 15 in our stranded-without-passports adventure, trying to think of reasons to be grateful that I'm in this situation. Hmm. They're not flying thick and fast.
Met a couple of English tourists on Friday, the day we finally organised and paid for our passports, which should be available tomorrow, or the day after - ie.: before our rescheduled flight on Wednesday. That was good. This couple was our age; they'd arrived in Saigon from England, via Hong Kong. We met them at a crossroad bar when we were feeling buoyant, and not a little drunk. We shared travel stories, as you do, and decided to have dinner together. Lovely. Contact with people who speak idiomatic English, albeit with a London slant. No matter.
At the end of the first evening, decided to meet up and swap stories the following evening, which we did. That meant they'd had two entire days walking around District 1, I suppose. They'd been to a couple of tourist meccas and done the done things. They'll be in Nha Trang now. They decided that after two days in Saigon, they'd pretty much had it and needed to move on. Really enjoyed their company. Even took photos of them and swapped email addresses. But sorry, new BFFs. If it's a choice between meeting you, and blinking ourselves back to January 14 and not losing our passports, I'll take the passports.
As I was saying, for us, this is Day 9 of Stranded in Saigon.
I know my way around now. After breakfast, we do this amble down through a park, down the seafood aisle in Ben Thanh markets, down a few streets around there towards the Saigon River - wide, muddy, fast flowing wash with vegetation scudding along. Water lilies? Not real sure. We walk up through the manicured garden displays in some CBD area. Stare up at the buildings, swig from our water bottle and walk on, holding onto each others fingers, like elephants, trunk and tailing it. No public displays of affection, please, in Vietnam. Won't get started on what apparently is allowed cos I don't want anyone reading my anonymous blog, tracking me down and making me stay here any longer.
The food is definitely good and cheap. Try Vietnamese Kitchen. Couldn't tell you where it is, but it's good. They don't rush you from course to course, and by god that Johnny Walker hit the spot after today's shit walk.
Back in our air-conditioned hotel room now, showering off the shit walk grime and I inadvertently found something that I think the Vietnamese - and the Europeans - do really well. Much better than Australians, who should adopt this practice. English guy last night told me it wouldn't be too hard to plumb in, and I'm thinking of investigating the possibilities when I'm safely home in Aussie.
It's a very useful gadget; easily operated. Serves a variety of functions - foot washing; shoe washing, and that little frisson of delight, bum washing. I'm talking about that hose, hanging by the toilet cistern. Extremely useful, especially when one's paper may not be flushed tidily down the toilet.
Still would have rather not lost the passports though.
Just sayin'. Cheers from Fraudster. (More sanguine than even she realised; second detached retina seems to be hanging in there. Year 10 English, last period Friday Feb 3 is looking awesome.)