A week has passed since we came back from Vietnam. It was a very memorable journey, thanks to our travel companions and the local friends we met there.
The trip started of a bit bumpy, struggling to flag down a cab in rush hour Singapore – but thanks to little traffic congestion we made it, albeit a bit stressed out, on time at our departure gate Wednesday evening. With an hour time change and only two hours in flight, we arrived at our hotel around 10, where Erich and his wife were waiting for us. Erich studied with Chris in Lucerne and lived in Vietnam the past two years. We enjoyed a nice evening with local food and 50cent beers and were truly happy for the help of the two locals, who helped us to order tasty food from the Vietnamese menu.
Early Thursday morning, Louis, a Vietnamese-Canadian friend of Maggie came to pick us up and took us out to breakfast and showed us a whirl-wind tour of Saigon before putting us on the bus to the Mekong Delta. We arrived in Vinh Long where we did our homestay with a local family and had a glimpse into country life in Vietnam – a really interesting experience! We had a friendly boatman who guided us around the delta and smiled the biggest toothless grin I’ve ever seen. The first trip with him he handed me some fruits and a large knife as a gift and with my lack of Vietnamese we communicated the coming days with smiles and gestures. The sleep in the country side was in an open room, with a bed net protecting us from malaria mosquitoes – but sadly not the humidity and heat. Therefore, the alarm was welcomed early Friday morning when we headed to the floating market with the toothless boatman and from there to My Tho to meet Erich. In My Tho we rented scooters and braved the crazy traffic – we all survived and had an authentic Vietnamese experience zipping through coconut plantations and along long stretches of tropical paradise, with a rainbow in the backdrop.
We explored My Tho and went to a party at Khang’s house which gave a glimpse into local life. After a big and tasty lunch, we went into the traffic the last time and made it safely to the hotel. We left My Tho and left in direction of Saigon, to celebrate our travel buddy’s birthday that night. Thanks to Tripadvisor and the most minimal effort ever, we found a decent hotel in the heart of the city. We found also a nice supper place, where Louis joined us again. After a delicious supper, we tried to find an ideal place to have a fun night. It took as a few cab rides to actually find it, but it was definitely worth looking around a little, because we ended up staying for a while.
With a breakfast on the street we said goodbye to Vietnam, a country which has treated us nicely and surprised us on every corner. Thank you dear friends from far away, you made our trip unforgettable!