At times, travelling can be both exciting and tiresome. The constant hassle for money, the new, strange, foreign places, they can undoubtedly be overwhelming at times.
Clearly, the lack of chocolate is finally making itself known. Since coming from Japan, I have barely eaten sweets or such. Partly it is because there are barely any clear convenience stores around (stuff being generally sold by pedlars); but I think that partially it’s because I simply do not quite feel comfortable enough to just go out and find chocolate when my need arises.
By all means, Vietnam so far has been great and exciting – and the cheapness simply fuels the fun (tho I’ve been throwing money in all directions so I think I ended up just as much as I did in Japan; sure, getting taxis all day long, haircut, sim card and cocktails included).
Yesterday I had a lot of pictures of the Ben Tanh Market (in District 1), which I personally do not like because it’s just a huge tourist trap. Full of tourists, people selling all sorts of crap and perpetually trying to rip you off. However, I did go over to Dan Sinh Market (on Yensin Street) also known as the Army Supply Market.
For all those who know me, I have a little uniform fetish. And I love weapons and army supplies. It was great to see all of these merchandise all over, yet I was surprisingly restrained. I bought nothing. I did see a pair of military gloves but he woman just didnt lower the price as much as I wanted to.
I was so excited to see my favourite convenience store chain from Japan here! Also, Vietnam has brought capitalism to a new concept: cans of 360ml were more expensive than bottles of 390ml of the same beverage. This being said, the bottle was 6000 dong: barely 70 cents or so!
I also bought a (really fucking cheap) helmet! My tour guide for the day (An, or Andy as he calls himself), didnt have an extra one. (However bunnies should not worry, it was all rather professional 🙂 lizards tend to be rather unadventurous in Vietnam. Geckos in mah house!)
I visited District 7 for some more Pho, a movie and witnessing a rather strange part of Saigon: clean, empty, with lots of korean signs. Still unbuilt, with the river taking a much more rural form so close to the city.
The movie wasn’t as good as I expected (Oz the Great); and the mall was eerily empty.
Then I went and had a haircut – in an exceedingly dodgy and hair-filled saloon. But it only cost me 50,000 dong (2.5$), and the guy was alright with the scissors. So hence the title.
I accidentally set to rest in 23 September Park where Vietnamese would come and start talking to me so that they could practice English. At first I met three lovely girls, who also warned me about being careful with my bags and phone. Then I moved to another little bench where another guy (called Tan. Age 26. Works as a manager in a hotel) started talking to me. Then I was hungry so he showed me to a Pho 24 and then stayed around for the night market.
As the night market was being set up, there were stalls expanding from nowhere and everything was rather… “Unregulated” (so I dont say dangerous and environmentally unfriendly).
When I got home I was more or less kidnapped by my host and taken to a bar to meet her friends (as well as meeting some locals near the house, who offered us beer and food). All in all, definitely a true vietnamese experience (coupled with one of her male friends actually hitting on me. I guess I still have some charm left in this duckling body).