First thing I have to say is that it’s nice to be back in civilization. I’m actually blown away at having 24 hour power, cars on the street and cabs with air-conditioning. Blows my mind!
I flew right into Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City for non-colonists) from Burma (Myanmar for non-colonists). I almost missed my flight since I had to transfer in Bangkok and go through immigrations since I didn’t get the transfer set up. Big mistake. Luckily Elise found me a good line at immigration and I got on the flight 10 minutes before take off.
I’m really digging Saigon. There are so many scooters here, it doesnt’ make sense! The traffic is outrageous. Cars and scooters are everywhere. Honking and breaking. It’s chaos, but it’s cool. I like it. Vietnam has a huge negative stigma about it as it’s a place where you will get robbed. I’m being careful, but I feel on edge. I hate that feeling. Makes me feel closed to others.
Since I’m back alone, I’m going to power through things here. First stop is a day out and about Saigon. Check it out and see what’s going on. Then, I’ll take a two-day Meekong river tour with a homestay. It’s probably the only way I’ll get to see this river and it’ll be cool to sleep at a person’s house (however touristy that will end up being). I’m not too sure what to expect, but it might be nice and maybe I can meet a new travel partner (Elise is in Thailand now). After the Meekong, I’ll check out the Cu Chi tunnels and get a feel for the war. It’s a bit weird because here is a place that fought the West and won. Though there are no bad feelings against “us”, it’s weird to see big Communist posters.
After seeing the city and its surroundings, I’ll head up north a bit. I can’t go too far up because my VISA limits me to an exit date, but I’ll still get to check stuff out. It’s a new chapter in this little trip of mine, and though it has a different feel from the last one, I plan on making the best of it.