Monday, May 07, 2007

The long-awaited guest post

Well, where to begin…

I guess an introduction would do, I’m Alan, aka mullet, Henno’s friend. I decided to come and visit him and Christoff at their crib in the Tan Binh District. The past two weeks here in Vietnam have been an adventure unlike any I’ve had before.

The chaos of being on Ho Chi Minh City’s streets in peak traffic or the tranquility of the beaches with it’s palm trees and peanut fishing boats. The peace and luxury of a massage and facial or the thrill and rugged beauty of travelling the countryside on a scooter, seeing parts of the Vietnamese countryside in ways that many westerners will never experience and shooting targets with an AK47 assault rifle or haggling with a shopkeeper in the market over the price of water. Eating amazing meals in a restaurant with 5 star service or chowing down on a durian fruit or a pigeon’s head. The graphic, disturbing and mostly justified hatred of America for the Vietnam War from the local perspective depicted in all of the museums and other war-related tourist attractions or the selfless attitude of locals who would like nothing better than to help a person to get the most from their visit regardless of the reward.

These are but a few of the crazy, amazing, unexpected, annoying, shocking (and many more adjectives that I cant be bothered to mention) experiences that I’ve had in Vietnam.

When I first arrived at the airport to see Henno and Christoff calmly leaning against their scooters anxiously waiting to see my initial reaction, I was completely overwhelmed by the city and all that it had to offer but after a few days, even initially strange things like the upbeat music, drawling bleat or decidedly midi tune of a passing merchant selling some or other product or service became a familiar sound that formed part of the day to day hum of HCMC and just faded into the background.

One of the highlights of the trip would have to be taking a scooter out into the countryside to go and see the Cu Chi tunnels, getting lost on the way there, lost on the way back, getting caught in a tropical thunderstorm and soaked to the bone before being flagged of the road and into a tiny roadside “café” for a Coke and bombarded by questions in both Vietnamese and broken English. Another, playing footie with the Saigon Raiders and kicking some ass before retiring from heat exhaustion and blistered feet.

I won’t even begin to mention embarrassing karaoke jaunts, throwing up after memorable (?!) nights on the town and sampling some of the more exotic fruits and delicacies.

I could hardly begin to summarise everything that I have seen, done and experienced in the two weeks I’ve been here but I can say that it has been an amazing experience and a shitload of fun. It has also been awesome to see two of my good friends and the friends that they have made along the way enjoying life and being so at ease and content.

Thanks burgs for showing me how you roll, It was killer. Enough said.






22 comments:

Caz said...

About bluddy time there was a post on here

loesil said...

Ahoy!

Sounds killer...can't wait for my trip - Allan, just one thing: was it as moeilik to arrange things with Henno and Xtoff before hand?

I'll be in Nam 14-28 July - any other hints and tips of what to see and do?

michelle said...

nee, dit klink SO lekker!!

henno, klink of julle baie besoekers gaan begin kry :)

al gehoor van die coffee bar network? soos facebook, maar as een van die (in hierdie geval) random, onbekende mense op jou coffee bar netwerk toevallig in jou land is, kan hulle by jou gaan inval vir koffie..of blyplek. Glo baie lekker - so hoor ek.
ta :)
m

mullet - Unofficial Travel Consultant said...

Ag nee wat Loesil, solank hulle jou besoek datums het is ek seker hulle sal iets organise. Kry hulle net om jou te kom oplaai by die lughawe. Wat tips betref, moenie tee veel kak saam vat nie. Vat min klere, jou kamera, 'n lot geld en in jou geval, 'n reeenjas. Maak seker jy het jou visa voor jy gaan. En wees gereed om nuwe dinge te try. Verder moet jy maar vir Henno die skim probeer in die hande te kry. Awe.

alet said...

Ola! Jis dit klink REGTIG killer Mullet!!
Hennoq lyk my jy moet maar laat Loesil ook vir ons 'n gaspos tik oor hoe dit met julle gaan. Lyk my jy praat nou net deur woordvoerders! ;)

loesil said...

Shot, Mullet!

M-Alet, jy't slaan die spyker oppie kop oor die woordvoerder-style.
En ek weet nie eens WAT van Xtoff geword het nie...sien net op Facebook sy status is "In relationship" - nou wonder ek maar net?!

Steeds by M-Alet, hoe lyk dit, kan jy nie saam kom Nam toe nie?

James said...

Kyk hie Head da Burg. Wat gaan aan met hierdie backwater ghost town van jou? Swaai darem net 'n laaste post wat presies beskryf hoe jy 'n opium kop geraak het en nie meer tyd kry om jou tjommas treat met skreeu snaakse inskrywings nie. Sho brotha.

loesil said...

Ek stem!

mullet said...

Wait! I have an incoming message from the Big Giant Head: "Sorry for the lack of replies or bloggage, I've just been kak lam, not felt like doing anything", "Anyways yeah Jungle Beach was cool - will stick some photos up when I get off my lam ass". So there you have it folks, Henno is lam.

loesil said...

Klink vir my hy is net k*ksleg, Mullet!
Of dit is Xtoff-sindroom...dié ken ook mos nie van kontak hou nie.
Anyway, hulle moenie dink hulle gaan vriende oor he as hulle Desember terug kom nie.
Hoekom begin jy nie vir ons 'n blokkie nie, Mullet?

loesil said...

Klink vir my hy is net k*ksleg, Mullet!
Of dit is Xtoff-sindroom...dié ken ook mos nie van kontak hou nie.
Anyway, hulle moenie dink hulle gaan vriende oor he as hulle Desember terug kom nie.
Hoekom begin jy nie vir ons 'n blokkie nie, Mullet?

michelle said...

wanneer henno kom terug?

no news is good news, so ek kan seker net sê: enjoy :)

maar dit sal nice wees om weer iets hier te lees...

Godknows said...

Hi there, Surely you will enjoy your time as long as you stay. Have a good trip.

henno said...

It's coming...back on track with a blog attack...

James said...

Zy ma se kind. You narrowly escaped a digital riot. Can't wait for the "The blog attack of the Burgernator"

Msim said...

Heita Hennotjie

Ek sien jy is nog in balansskap so Dan Roodt se. Se vir my wie is Sarah. How are the exotic species, surely they can't be better than Janine. Things are good this side, except for Wortel's further reclining hairline (& bulging wallet). Tell me do they have affirmative action, quotas and previously disadvantaged policies there - so that I can come.
Pass my kindest regards to Christo & whatever happened to the footballing team?

loesil said...

Heppa heppa Msim! Don't expect anything from The Menno soon...he's got a bad case of notcommunicatingigitis. How you, dude?

Anyways, Henno, moenie dink daai troosboodskappie gaan ons flous nie...ons sal seker nog twee weke moet wag vir die reeds long awaited post!

alet said...

hennoq...soos loesil sê ons laat ons nie paai met leë boodskappies nie. Ek lees vir weke nie die blog nie om jou kans te gee om bietjie van jou "k@ksleggeit" ontslae te raak, maar steeds NIKS!!!!!

mullet said...

Ek dink hy probeer net om te sien hoeveel comments hy kan kry vir een blog, aangesien dat daar net drie mense is wat elke nou en dan comment, doen hy nogals goed, hehe.

henno said...

Al Burg: Hehe, you've figured out my evil plan...dammit.

Soos Dan Roodt sê Loesil: Ek is in Lammingskap.

Right, sal kyk of DIT dalk die week is wanneer my slegweesgeid ophou, maar ek kan niks belowe nie...

James Burg: Daai blog attack het sy ammo verloor, nou moet ek in die Cu Chi Tunnels gat rondkrap vir 'n paar koeels. Ek mis Kogel Baai...

Anonymous said...

Hi



Greetings!

My name is Nag , a television producer working from Singapore, i just happen to see your blog , . I'm currently working on an 8-part television series called Global expats for a local television channel. It aims to examine and track the lives and livelihood of expatriates who choose to work, live and play in Asia. I would like to feature you in our series. We would like you to share your Expat experience what kind of a cultural shock you had? How did you cope? What are the things you like about the new place? How is different is life away from home etc. what's the culture shock you had first moved in? What efforts you take to adapt to the culture? (For example learning language, music, art etc? how you socialize with local people etc.



If you are interested pls. drop me line @ cm_nag@yahoo.com



We will take it from there.



Regards

Nag

mullet said...

Haha, shit.
Now just imagine the kind of publicity you would be getting if you actually updated your blog every now and then bru!
so you gonna do it?