Monday, 28 March 2016

Had a pretty quiet day which was nice. We left the hostel about 11 and the others headed to burger king for breakfast but I decided to get something vaguely healthy because of my cold so opted for Pho and a coconut. Pho is basically a broth with noodles in and i had mine with vegetables which was really nice.

I met the others and we walked towards a park but stopped on the way at a tour office to see how much trips to the Mekong Delta were. They were 150000 dong- £5 so we paid there and continued to the park. It was about a 15 minute walk and we sat down on a bench. After half an hour or so I decided to go to the post office which appears to be the only place in the city you can send post cards from so as we were already half way ish it made sense to go from there. It was another treacherous journey but I made it and walked back to the park.

We stayed a bit longer than headed back to the hostel. We showered and got dressed and went out for dinner at an Indian restaurant listed on the top 10 cheap eats in the city. It was sooo nice and we all agreed it was the nicest meal we'd had on the trip so far. We went back to the hostel and I skyped my family and lauren showered.

We went to a cheap bar near our hostel. The drinks were big and we sat outside but people begging and selling stuff kept coming up to us. We've got used to shaking our heads at the sunglasses sellers who are approximately every metre, but one came over and after Molly expressed interest in a sunglasses he wouldn't leave. He wanted $5 for it, she said no, and kept lowering the price. He looked so desperate and upset it was horrible to watch and when Molly bought one for $2 me and Lauren gave him some money- a tiny amount really but he looked so happy. After that several more street vendors approached us including a tiny skinny girl who looked about 6 who we later saw with her mum who was also selling stuff while holding a tiny baby. It was so horrible to see because it's difficult to know what to do; If her daughter sells a lot her mum will keep sending her out, but if they sell nothing they might not be able to eat. It was really sad to see these people forced to beg as so far we've seen very little poverty; although some of the housing conditions are poor compared to western standards we've seen very few homeless people and everyone just looks really happy. It's difficult ethically because obviously people selling stuff take advantage of us being tourists and give falsely high prices which we can't afford, but maybe we should be giving them more money anyway.

Anyway, a couple of vodka buckets later we were no longer on the verge of years and had a chat with a Nigerian man who thought we were all 27- concerning when I look about 12. It's weird that I feel so safe here; the locals are friendly and seem genuinely nice and we've only encountered about 4 weird men in the whole month; back in Bournemouth I'd expect that on one night out. I headed back to the hostel about half 11 and the others followed a couple of hours later. It was a fun evening though we probably shouldn't have done it the night before an early morning tour.

Laura x

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