Tuesday, July 28, 2009

a much needed summary of the past 10 days

it's a lot harder to blog on the road than i originally imagined. i do have a netbook, but i can't carry it around with me all day (just carrying around my daily essentials (sunblock, cleaning wipes, sanitizers, tp, eyedrops, a hat, a fan, moleskin, water, umbrella, wallet, camera, chapstick) is heavy enough in this scorching heat. most of the time when i'm out on a tour or trekking around town, i leave my netbook locked up with my luggage. and most of the fine hostels i'm shelling out $7-15 a night to sleep in, don't have the greatest (if at all) wi-fi connection...

currently, i'm waiting for a cab in our latest hotel lobby in hanoi- probably the cleanest/nicest place we've stayed for $15/night. and they just fixed the wi-fi today so i've gotta make this quick, before it's back to cyberspace black hole again.

in chronological order since my last entry:

1) singapore: as most of ya'll probably saw the food pr0n on fb, i'll keep it short. we hung out with a family, which was nice. staying in a home, as opposed to a hotel, felt really comforting. food was unbelievable. i am coming back to eat the rest of singaporean cuisine, since 3 days clearly wasn't enough time.

2) flew into ho chi minh city. veronica, a friend from houston, had met some local vietnamese girls on her last trip. so we hung out with them. they were so sweet and seemed eager to hang out and practice their english with us. riding on the back of their motorbike was a trippy experience, i was almost hyperventilating. i also took jo to visit the lunch lady again. it was so good that we went two days in a row. for 13,000 dong (80cents) a bowl, it is by far the best meal i've had in vietnam, hands down.

locals who were baffled when i wanted to eat 2 dinners.

lunch lady!!! so cute

3) took a bus to siem reap, cambodia. the bus ride was long and painful. we left at 6am and arrived at 6pm, exhausted. woke up at 4:30am two days in a row to watch the beautiful sunset over angkor wat and other great cambodia temples. it's incredible how people built such magnificent monuments using nothing else but manpower over a thousand years ago. the grandness of angkor wat silences you the minute you see its majestic silhouette. randomly found our diving class buddies on the steps of angkor wat and hung out. even though we're pretty much just strangers, it was still nice to see a familiar face in another country. at that moment, i realized how much i missed everyone back home.

fobby hat is back in action

look at the tree roots!!!! it was tearing down the temples. madness.

ridiculous, right?

4) made a dash to the airport and luckily found a plane that was leaving for hanoi. paid for the ticket on the spot at the airport (my first time!) and felt instantly spontaneous. after arriving in hanoi, immediately booked a trip to ha long bay. it was still just as beautiful the second time around.

ha long bay

5) this brings me back to now. flying to laos today. we're going trekking and biking in the jungle in luang prabang, which is supposed to be another jewel. i think we're gonna skip sleeping in the "primitive" native hmong houses, though. people in asia advertise their crummy hostels as top rated, so imagine how prehistoric the accommodations in the native villages would be...

i've been on the road for exactly 4 weeks today. overall, it's been an amazing trip. in a way, i actually can't wait to go home (i think the whole trip peaked at angkor wat, so after the climax i feel it's just all downhill from here), but i know a part of me will regret the decision to head back home early.

i'm shortening my trip and skipping china (mainland) entirely. as much as i enjoy being on the road, i actually kind of miss using my brain and working... I KNOW I KNOW it's ludacris. but trust me. having to worry about your finances and the economy and the state of job market on the road isn't exactly the most comforting travel situation. uncle sam's been gracious enough, but i don't want to ring in the new year unemployed. so on that note, if ya'll know any good job leads, send it my way por favor!


  1. my family is from north vietnam near hanoi-- i can't wait to visit!

    come on back to USA, and i'll keep an eye out for SF jobs for ya!! safe travels =)

  2. mama says: enjoy rest of trip and come home safely! xx

  3. man you got lunch lady soup AGAIN! so lucky.

  4. you went to the lunch lady! i read about her and want to try so bad!