Ho Chi Minh – day one

16 Jul

Day one in Ho Chi Minh was hellish. Hands down the worst day of our whole  trip. It was the perfect storm… Brian was terribly miserable because he was covered in a thousand mosquito bites (I swear that boy must be super sweet because those mosquitos LOVE him). I was terribly miserable with cramps and a rough bout of pms. We had a truly miserable flight from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh with a snotty and sneezing old man seated next to Brian and two very loud and annoying kids seated next to me. I honesty didn’t know two hours could feel so long. When we finally arrived in Ho Chi Minh it was 100 degrees and humid as F*%k, which made us both even more miserable. In addition we happened to arrive in Ho Chi Minh on a national holiday (May Day) and everything was pretty much closed (great planning on our part). Do you see where I am going with all of this? It was just one of those days.

We took a cab from the airport to our hotel, The Hotel Continental, which is a beautiful historic hotel located in the heart of district one (upside of the day). After settling into our room, we attempted to shake off our nasty moods by planning a fun afternoon. First up, we headed to Cholon, Vietnam’s “Chinatown”, home to over half a million people, making it the largest Chinese community in Vietnam. The area was something I was dying to see during our stay because I was keen on going to all the Chinese medicine shops.  Sadly, most of the shops were closed due to the holiday. So instead we aimlessly walked the  sticky, hot and humid streets of Cholon in silence (total grumps). Finally we stumbled upon one Chinese medicine store that was open- WINNING! I excitedly walked up to the two women behind the counter, equipped with my fancy English to Chinese translation app on my iphone and eagerly asked them for the magical herb I was on the hunt for. They both stared at me with a look of disgust and then rudely waved me off. I’ve never been so offended! Clearly, they were not fans. I left the store defeated.

We spent the next twenty minutes continuing to wander the sticky, hot and humid streets of Cholon, while I recounted the Chinese medicine shop experience over and over to Brian (clearly, unable to let it go). Then suddenly (as if things weren’t bad enough) the sky turned dark and it began to rain. This day was officially a wash. At that point we decided to call it quits and hailed a cab back to our hotel (which took forever due to the national holiday), where we holed up in our air-conditioned room reading our books for a few hours. It was exactly what the doctor ordered. I’ve learned that sometimes it’s ok to hole up in your hotel room while traveling. It’s impossible to be on the go non-stop for thirty days.


After recharging our batteries we went to a fabulous dinner at a romantic little restaurant Brian found, May restaurant which served French/Vietnamese cuisine that was delectable. After stuffing our bellies we went straight back to our hotel room and climbed back in bed.




6 Responses to “Ho Chi Minh – day one”

  1. righteousbruin9 July 17, 2014 at 4:16 pm #

    Some days are like that. I was stationed in Cholon, in 1971. I hope you were able to find the herb on a subsequent day.

    • kate365til July 28, 2014 at 6:48 am #

      How long were you stationed in Cholon? I’d love to hear more about your experience! Oh and very true…some days are like that and you just gotta go with the flow:)

  2. Amy July 17, 2014 at 5:54 pm #

    Oh what a horrible start! At least it ended on a good note 🙂
    I am not so good at the ‘hole up in the hotel room’ thing, but my boyfriend is slowly teaching me, or I just leave him behind and exhaust myself by striding the streets solo while he enjoys the king size bed and room service! Can’t wait to hear more about your honeymoon adventures!

    • kate365til July 28, 2014 at 6:47 am #

      I usually have a hard time with holing up in the hotel room too! I feel like I am going to miss something…not to mention what’s the point of traveling around the world to sit in a hotel room! But there was simply no avoiding it that day! HA. 🙂

  3. SewHaute July 18, 2014 at 10:56 am #

    “This day was officially a wash.” LOL, how ironic 😉


  1. Ho Chi Minh- day two | - July 28, 2014

    […] our wretched first day in Ho Chi Minh behind us and a good nights sleep under our belts, we awoke in much better moods and […]

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