Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Goooood Mornnnning Vietnam!

We awoke this morning excited to get out and explore the city. We had our map and a travel book and a plan to go enjoy a coffee and breakfast as we set out. The streets of Ho Chi Minh City were alive with motorbikes and cars honking and swerving down the streets. We had to figure out how to cross the street. It was a constant flow of traffic. There were no street lights. We were told to just walk. The cars and motorbikes will slow down. Trying to cross the street in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) is like playing Frogger. You take a step or two into the street and then work your way across and pray not to get hit. Fara kept saying "Mik, just walk. Just go! Go! Go! Go!" Ok. I shut my eyes and went. I survived the first few corners and it slowly gets easier or we just got more courageous. I looked at her and said "you will not get me on a motorbike in this city. It is too dangerous." Yep. I said it and 15 minutes later I found myself putting on a helmet and jumping on the back of a motorbike... in a dress!  For some crazy reason I wanted to see the city by bike and talked Fara into going along with my crazy idea. I think it was the cute bunny helmet she got to wear that closed the deal. We were off to see Saigon on the back of motorbikes with our new Vietnamese friends Day and Tin!
Saigon River
At first, it was a little scary. Cars and motorbikes swerving from every direction. I just held on tight and enjoyed the cool breeze. Fara was calmly sitting on the back of Tin's bike with her hands on his shoulders. Not me! I clenched my arms around Day and held on tight! Our first stop was a traditional Vietnamese breakfast in Saigon. The food was delicious.
Fara's breakfast of mein noodles with seafood
Then it was time to put on the helmet and crawl back onto the bike and see the Saigon River.

Fara and Day- Fara, where's your face mask?

Day is a great worries!
Dragon boat on the Saigon River
Next stop was the War Memorial Museum, Notre Dame Cathedral, Post Office, City Hall, Opera House and Chinatown.

We asked Day why the city was now called Ho Chi Minh City but everything and everyone still referred to it as Saigon. He said "Saigon will always be Saigon. Everyone still calls it Saigon except the government." So, we decided to follow his advise and call it Saigon. By the end of the day, we were hot and tired. We decided to stop at the fruit smoothie stand and get fresh smoothies. As we enjoyed the deliciousness, I asked Fara "Were these made with ice?" She looked at me and said "I don't know." So, now the real question....will we get sick? Hmmm...guess that is a waiting game.


  1. Love the time save a little money and share the motorcycle with Fara;) would be funny and 3 on a sped!!!!!

  2. Michelle!!! Steve and I are enjoying your blog soooo much!!! You would not believe how envious we are of you. I think about you everyday and I'm so happy that you are off on this adventure. Please keep the posts and pictures coming. You're stories are great and your pictures are beautiful. Big Hugs!!!


  3. Enjoying the stories and the pictures. Can't wait for the next update. We miss you, but really couldn't be happier for you!