MY FIRST FULL DAY IN VIETNAM

Apart from all the scary trucks that come out at night, the speeding cars that turn from a street head on into you, the judder bars in unlit areas and massive pot holes… it was fun

MY FIRST FULL DAY IN VIETNAM

I started my morning with a wee stroll down by the river to find Banh Mi for breakfast (about 90c).

I hardly eat bread but I will be making an exception for this!!
Opposite my room,  I love the rustic-ness
Spoilt
I adore the contrast in this moment, the colour and symmetry is beautiful
Siblings
HOT TOC (street hairdresser and ear cleaner)
#safety

Riding the bike was one of my biggest challenges here. Not because I’m scared of the traffic (oddly enough). As I’ve got quite used to it over the last few years…my fear was getting lost.  So I did a few small rides around the area and then thought I’d tackle a big ride.

Pollution mask, rain coat, helmet, gloves, water and sensible shoes!

I decided to try and do a dry run to work. I’m best to practice for 2 days before I go on Monday. I searched Google Maps and it seemed straight forward but how would I remember the names of all the streets?  But as soon as I started driving it all came back to me. I thought previously I was just daydreaming on the back of the bike but some of it must’ve sunk in via osmosis. There was the pink church, the river, the balloon street the railway line and…oh my goodness….the supermarket. I soon as I saw that I knew exactly where to go after that. I actually squealed behind my pollution mask and did a happy dance on my bike. 

Perfect opportunity to buy some more fruit. New towels and my sun jacket. Sorted.

Fruity bunch of locals
There is a lot of french influence here so their baking is amazing!!
These creamy little balls of puff are best to be avoided….they are SO good!!
The mystery meat section

Mary. I attempted to make a video just for you but I got told off by security. But I took stealth photo’s for you as I knew you would love to see what is sold here.

Back on my bike after paying 10c to park and by this stage I knew the way off by heart.  But crap I forgot about the MASSIVE roundabout. That was intrepid to say the least!! A swarm of buses trucks and of course bikes. There were many swear words!

I arrived, my heart full with excitement about being back.

I pulled up at the orphanage thinking I just wanted to take a pic to celebrate that I’d made it. The security stopped me. Which is so so good. (I’ll talk about this is a later post). Behind him stood one of the co directors. She recognising me behind my helmet and mask and came out. Said hi to gesture me in. It was SO lovely that she remembered me 🙂  She pointed for me to park my bike but I told her that I would be in on Monday. I wanted to be able to see the kids and spend the entire morning with them, rather than a quick “hi” and leave. Woo hoo I did it…one more practice tomorrow though I think.

On the way home I stop for fresh fruit
I get home, pop to the hairdressers for a wee treat (its a quarter of the price!) and celebrate the fact that I am still alive and that I survived driving in HCMC. #jessicaRabbit
I was feeling pretty sassy, I nailed the ride today so thought…”how hard can it be to ride at night?”…so I jumped on the bike to check out the gym that I wanted to go to.  It was in another district and it was still quite light so off I went. LONG LONG stop short….I got very lost and thought it was too far away anyway.  So I found a fancy mall by the river (as the sun was going down), I stopped to observe rather than battle the traffic.
These boys were loving their dad throwing them in the air
Family portrait
Super heroes!!!
and their queen…
Fast asleep while mum works on the beauty counter.
Damn…where is my bike?
Looks simple enough yeah?
But it wasn’t!!!!!
It was a LONG night! much longer than I had expected.  Apart from all the scary trucks that come out at night, the speeding cars that turn from a street head on into you, the judder bars in unlit areas and massive pot holes… it was fun.   The great thing about this part of town is that you can ride one handed with your Google Maps and no one will steal your phone – sweet!!!
If you are interested…here are a few videos of me riding.  Feeling kinda proud actually….I conquered my fear, I got lost and it was ok.
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