Good Morning Viet Nam

Friday, November 26, 2004

Gobble Gobble

Hope everyone is enjoying leftover turkey and stovetop today! Just wanted to give a quick shout to let you all know how thankful I am to have each one of you in my life. Being on the other side of the world is constantly opening my eyes to my many blessings, but without a doubt, you guys are truly the best blessing of all! Must get some sleep as tomorrow I am going on a 5 day motorbike tour in the mountains. Always an adventure! Much much love, over and out.

Tuesday, November 16, 2004

Round 2

Pummeling is definetly the only way to relax here. Just got back from r0und 2 and feel adequately refreshed. Got my rub down from a blind masseuse. It's really cool, all of the masseuses there are blind. Talk about OT at work. While there wasn't the calming sound of the ocean on the beach, nor the soothing feeling of sand and oil rubbed over my sunburn, there was the omnipresent noise from the motorbikes to lull me into dreamland. But that soon faded into the background when my person started talking to her friends who were also pummeling innocent Westerners on the other side of the curtain. The Vietnamese language is truly trance-inducing. While I don't have a prayer ever understanding it, I love listening to it. And the people talk so much here! It's so refreshing to hear them joke and laugh and have no clue what they are saying, except when they point at you. But I always point and laugh back. But honestly, the people here are some of the happiest people I have ever seen.

So, what else have I been up to other than pampering myself incessantly? I've actually been working my ass off drawing stick figures! Who ever knew that stick figures could be so time consuming? We have to make loads of visuals for our lessons at the high school. I've been putting in lots of long hours, which has drastically cut down on my playtime. But no worries, that will come soon enough. Teaching is great! I love it so much more than the previous 2 weeks where we had to sit in the classroom and discuss grammar and theoretical crap. And more importantly, the kids love me. Or at least, I pretend they do.

I am just happy that class will be done as of Friday! After an all night celebration with my classmates, I plan to stay in Saigon and be a tourist until Thanksgiving. Post turkey, I plan on traveling up to Hanoi with a classmate. The plan is to travel the coast eventually making it back to Saigon, but we will see if that happens. Could definetly live here in Saigon, but know that there is more to Vietnam than this crazy city. Have not interviewed or made any housing commitments yet, and don't plan on it until traveling around some. Gotta love the no-strings-attached status. Story of my life. But if I do like it better in Hanoi, or some coastal town, enough to pitch a tent and call it home, it will be hard to say goodbye. More and more I am getting home-like tendencies toward Saigon. Two steps forward, one step back with every day getting a little better. I take great comfort in the fact that should I ever not be able to make it home due to severe inebriation, or some other excuse which is completely out of my control, I would always have a place to sleep here on the street with the locals. Or better yet, I could always curl up in someone's cyclo for the night. Almost like camping. I'm also going to miss the suspense and intrigue hanging over my head as I cross the street wondering if I am going to survive. But there is hope, I hear that the traffic is just as bad, if not worse, in Hanoi. I love living on the edge. I've also heard that Hanoi is more beautiful with lots of parks and lakes and french architecture, but I hope I will be able to find a little slice of dirty ole' Saigon somewhere. If not, I may just have to come back.

Off to grab some chow and review my lesson plan for tomorrow. Please don't hold any typos or misspellings in this blog against me. It's hard to be perfect all of the time. Over and out.

Monday, November 08, 2004

Happy Monday!

And I hope it is for all of you! While you all are just rolling out of bed, in complete denial that another week is about to begin, I just got back from the market with some killer material. Some of you have asked about my shirts, and they turned out great! Am having four more shirts made at a different tailor, one that takes credit cards. It's raining clothes, not men, in Saigon. I can't believe my luck and am already on the lookout for another piece of luggage for my new wardrobe. I plan on stopping by the market on my way home again tomorrow to look for more fabric. Thank goodness for Ann Taylor. My days of wardrobing other women in fashionable suits are finally coming into play. So far the theme has been fun floral prints, but who knows what I will be inspired with tomorrow.

Have gotten some inquiries as to school. Oh, right, that is why I am here. It's school, long days and not enough breaks, but the good thing is that my friends have to suffer with me. Fine, it's not that bad, sometimes it's even fun. But it is school. enough said. Tomorrow we begin our teaching practice session. We have 8 days with the munchkins. Actually they aren't munchkins, but 11-18 years old. Yikes! I hope they like me. What happens if they don't? But what is there not to like?! Enjoy your coffee!

Sunday, November 07, 2004


Hey All! Just got back from the beach and am sporting some killer tan lines. Mui Ne was the perfect escape from hectic Saigon and I am in total denial now that I am back in the tourist district, otherwise known as my home. We stayed in these awesome bungalows that came complete with mosquito nets! Very quaint and charming. The beach was nice and relaxing. I wanted to totally relax and splurged for a $2 massage on the beach. The only thing that made my pummeling relaxing was the atmosphere. Having sand and oil rubbed all over my sunburnt back felt awesome. They even pummelled my head! Those crazy natives. Off to do some highly overrated homework.

Thursday, November 04, 2004

Sunday Syndrome

Hey Kids! Just wanted to thank you all for your emails and thoughts. Sunday syndromes suck and they affect me every week. You think I would figure out the pattern as well as a means of coping, but I haven't yet. On a good note, Carrie also suffers from Sunday syndrome, so at least I have a partner in crime to commiserate with and keep me in line. Has been a fun filled week of adjustment, but I can honestly say that right now I am in a good place. Did yoga this week and have met someone to smack the tennis ball around with as well. So my city-cabin fever is gradually subsiding. Each day gets better and better. I'm liking it here more and more. And I am so fortunate to have found a great base of support here just as my base of support back in the States. Off to the beach this weekend and that should be a perfect getaway. Off to class. Ciao. and much much love. Will try to blog more regularly soon!