October 16, 2013

Day 7 – Ho Chi Min City

Early to rise – So people/animals here get up early, I think it’s partly because it’s so hot so people are up earlier and on the streets.  Streets and buses are busy and if the noise of the traffic doesn’t wake you then the roosters most certainly will!

Lunch – Whilst I used to think having lunch at 1 was a little early, here lunch is at 11! Not only is lunch much earlier but people eat with a sense of urgency.  I eat pretty slow so I’m trying to keep up!

Siesta – Now, partly because of the heat and partly because the day starts so early, people here nap after lunch and lunch breaks last 2 or more hours! There is a sense of chilling out and taking it easy

Plastic – Recycling and seperating rubbish is encouraged back home but here it appears to be unheard of.  People here love plastic – plastic chairs, tables, glasses – anything possible really!  There are no posters encouraging any sort of recyclying and there are very few rubbish bins.  Most rubbish is left outside stores or swept up and left in piles on the road

Sun but no tan – Most of us love the sun and many back home would give anything to get a tan well here it’s the exact opposite.  Women here cover up as much as possible – so long socks, gloves and hats to avoid getting any kind of tan! The fairer you are the better

Volunteering – I started volunteering at my second project, a school, where there are 20 students!  Open classrooms, blackboard and chalk – the good old fashioned way. Trying to get all 20 to listen – now that right there is this challenge!

Clubbing – Ladies the club to be is Lush – free entry and free drinks for ladies on Tuesday! I’ve been to clubs where you get in for free and you get free vodka but at this place you get beer, wine, a range of cocktails and spirits! So, why not kick back and relax until the clock strikes mid-night, after which you all pay for drinks

Lush night club in Saigon

Lush night club in Saigon

Districts – So here you have districts, similar to boroughs back home, district 1 is expensive and certain streets mirror Bond Street and Oxford Street minus the crowds! District 7, where I’m staying is good but prone to flooding

Vietnamese food/drink – Tried Vietnamese coffee – ice coffee similar to that in Athens, tried sticky rice with ice cream – ice cream with green rice and tried vegeterian pho – soup with noodles!

Places visited so far – the local zoo, Saigon tower, War museum, Catherdal, post office, Ben Thanh market and China town!

Saigon by night

Saigon by night

One of the many beautiful buildings in Saigon

One of the many beautiful buildings in Saigon