I've really been looking forward to coming to Vietnam. After a fantastic/amazing time in Cambodia I arrived in Ho Chi Minh City/Saigon and have been here for two days now. Last night I went out to Dinner with my guides Loc (Alex) and Phran and it was a really good time – took loads of pics at the restaurant. I leave tomorrow for a boat trip on the Mekong Delta. When I come back to the city, I have a cool cooking class to look forward too. Oh and did I mentioned that I was serenaded by a few taxi drivers when I arrived? Weird, but funny and oddly touching too. Man, the things that happen when you're on holiday eh? All in all a very busy, but incredibly friendly welcome to Vietnam.
Then why aren't I feeling so great?
Ho Chi Minh/Saigon is a big bustling city, filled with tourists and people and trucks and motorbikes, just a constant whir of activity. Where crossing the street can actually kill you, no joke!!!! It's crowded and noisy, it's a very modern city with loads of construction, new restaurants and stores - very up and coming. I usually love this sort of thing so again, why aren't I getting into this??
As you've seen from my blog postings, I've had good days, great days and days where I've wanted to say ok this has been fun but I think I'm ready to give it a rest. Ups and downs are normal right? Right. In Cambodia I LOVED the peace and solitude. Siem Reap, although growing fast, was that place where I felt at peace, at home, relaxed and I loved it. Do you know what I mean when you find that 'place'? You instantly feel comfortable. You breathe easier - you just feel so good, whether you're moving about or simply lounging. That was Cambodia for me.
Coming to Vietnam has definitely altered those feelings. It is a VERY different place from Siem Reap (as it should be). Remember in a previous post what I said about travelling alone? How you become much more perceptive of your likes and dislikes?? I'm noticing something that is surprising me a bit. I think I'm sort of losing interest in the bigger cities and the hustle and bustle, and I use to love that being a total city guy. I'm also finding lately that in cities I'm MUCH more aware and being made aware of my single status which in turn causes me to think about Rob or look at the multitudes of happy couples and families which again, in turn, leads to not great feelings.
Ok cranky man travelling, enough moaning. I'll get over it –promise!
As this trip progresses and I'm heading into quieter, more remote areas my feelings will change, you'll see.
In the meantime, coming up, a few snapshot of Ho Chi Minh City. The internet is very slow so uploading the pictures may take a while!