I couldn’t think of a better title for this post. But a couple of funny instances recently that made me laugh and I thought I should write about. It’s moments like these that make me really love the Vietnamese people.
1. I was speaking with one of our staff members about how the salutation to put on a letter we were going to send to about 200 executives in Saigon. We wanted to make it a personal letter but not spend the mass amount of time writing each persons name on every e-mail.
Me – “How about,,,,, ‘Dear Members, or Dear Esteemed Guests’.”
I write now from the Pham Ngu Lao district in Ho Chi Minh that now is home to Saigon’s only decent “Starbucks-like” cafe. Saigon doesn’t have Starbucks yet but this place is darn close. They have enough selection that even an American would be satisfied although I’m sure the staff won’t understand what a “skinny” latte is, so better take it easy on the coffee jargon.
The day has finally arrived. Tonight at midnight I’m traveling back to Tokyo, stay a couple days and then back to the USA. So today I have been running many errands and trying to get all those loose ends tied up. However, I’m not sure if the moon is not aligned or some cosmic forces can sense my excitement and are playing games with me because nothing is going right today. Or perhaps I have been here too long and my patience with normal Saigon insouciant-ness has simply run out.
Last night my good buddy and roommate packed up his stuff and left Vietnam, perhaps not to return. Axel was the guy I discovered Vietnam with as we both had studied in Tokyo together. He left the language program earlier than I, but we kind of understood that we would probably both see each other again in Vietnam sooner or later. In the August of 2004 I came to Vietnam and about 8 months later he finished up his MBA program and came to do some consulting work for our friend who owns a computer company. He stayed in the room just next to mine and now seeing that room empty, I can’t help but feel a little sad.
As I’ve mentioned in my previous posts, my batteries are a little drained and I need a vacation. During this time, I’ve also been thinking about which country I would like to go to next. I was thinking Tokyo or somewhere on the west coast of the USA. However, as I was riding my motorbike around today it occurred to me why I really like Saigon compared to other places.