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.
In Saigon, the ex-pat community isn’t that big and you usually cannot go more than ten minutes without seeing someone you know. You can pop into a bar or restaurant and catch up with someone from the local darts teams, friends, or some executives of large international companies. There are just enough places to go for entertainment and it is possible to actually know each place unlike in the big cities. When you go to business events, it’s like a reunion of friends and most people know each other.
This however can be a double edged sword since sometimes you want to go out and meet new people. This is where the tourists come in. Saigon is full of tourists everyday from all parts of the world, but especially Europe and Japan. Sometimes it’s interesting to go to the bar and meet people who are here on holiday and just have a nice chat with them.
The Vietnamese people are also very friendly and I have never ever felt in danger here unlike in the USA or Europe. Every smile is greeted with a smile and the weather is always sunny.
Basically, my life is to wake up every morning and look for new members for the Club, find sponsors for our events and basically just meet people. Today I went around to to the local restaurants, met the managers and told them about our soccer tournament we are having and if they would like to sell their food there. It’s a great job that gets me out of the office and some face time with just about everyone.
The reason I’m a little concerned about leaving Saigon, is that the lifestyles do not seem so much fun in Tokyo or the USA. In Tokyo, I can just imagine myself getting on the crowded train every morning, working until 8pm and then coming home completely exhausted. In Tokyo, it’s all work, work, work. My view of life in the US is a little better but pretty much the same. I would get in my car every morning, be stuck in traffic, work until 6pm, get stuck in traffic again and then come home completely exhausted.
To get an idea of a relatively normal day of my life here, I’d like to describe today.
1. Get up at 8:30.
2. Check work e-mail.
3. Go to the office and contact an architect about putting up a movable wall for darts boards on the 19th floor of our Town Club so we can have a darts team and join the league. (games every Tuesday night)
4. Get membership packets for the restaurants.
5. Visit 3 restaurants and speak to the manager about becoming a vendor for our Saigon 6’s tournament where teams from every nation compete in a soccer tournament.
6. Go to Parksons for some Gatorade and have lunch at a Vietnamese Fusion restaurant.
7. Come back home at 12:30pm and write this in my blog.
8. Maybe go to the fish shop for some small fish to feed my large fish.
9. Go to the gym / take a nap?
10. Go to darts at 7:00pm for the tournament.
Life is just so easy here it’s difficult for Westerners to move away!