Sunday, 7 August 2011

Goodbye Vietnam...

As I sit at the computer with Biz reflecting on the last month of our epic adventure, I am amazed with the adventure of a life time we have all had. The trip has been awesome, life changing for all, physically and emotionally challenging (which has made us all stronger in individual ways) and inspiring. We will be setting off from Saigon at 3pm today, checking out of a lovely hotel which Molly booked for us and then heading towards Ho Chi Minh Airport and then making the journey home!

Yesterday Molly was our group leader and had us all in the reception of the last hotel at 6.50am ready to check out and catch a public bus at 7am heading towards the heart of Saigon City. (The buses stop running at 7.30am and do not re start till later in the day) After fitting students and rucksacks  on buses during rush hour we finally arrived in the bus station ready to walk to our new hotel called the Duc Vuong Hotel (District 1, Saigon) before heading off for breakfast at Sozo (a great cafe near the hotel which employs young people from disadvantaged backgrounds and educates them and provides them basic life skill training). Then the exploring started....

Before lunch we were given some time to go exploring and all headed towards the huge indoor market in the centre of Saigon. The market was at times a little scary if you are not used to masses of people all trying to get your attention and sell you stuff. The sellers would come up to you and physically grab you to get your attention. A firm "No" and stern face made them back off.

After lunch we headed towards the War Remnant Museum which was thought provoking and also upsetting in parts due to the graphic photos and descriptions. After this we then headed towards the Plaza for a game of competitive bowling. We hired three lanes and had a great laugh. Mr Jack Clarke - we salute your excellence with a bowling ball! After this, we then had dinner!!!

Dinner! Molly was our leader for the day and had already done an excellent job of organizing the hotel, the various activities and keeping us on track. Dinner was no disappointment and as we tuck in to either a two or three course meal at a traditional restaurant

8 comments:

  1. As I sit at the computer with Biz reflecting on the last month of our epic adventure, I am amazed with the adventure of a life time we have all had. The trip has been awesome, life changing for all, physically and emotionally challenging (which has made us all stronger in individual ways) and inspiring. We will be setting off from Saigon at 3pm today, checking out of a lovely hotel which Molly booked for us and then heading towards Ho Chi Minh Airport and then making the journey home!

    Yesterday Molly was our group leader and had us all in the reception of the last hotel at 6.50am ready to check out and catch a public bus at 7am heading towards the heart of Saigon City. (The buses stop running at 7.30am and do not re start till later in the day) After fitting students and rucksacks on buses during rush hour we finally arrived in the bus station ready to walk to our new hotel called the Duc Vuong Hotel (District 1, Saigon) before heading off for breakfast at Sozo (a great cafe near the hotel which employs young people from disadvantaged backgrounds and educates them and provides them basic life skill training). Then the exploring started....

    Before lunch we were given some time to go exploring and all headed towards the huge indoor market in the centre of Saigon. The market was at times a little scary if you are not used to masses of people all trying to get your attention and sell you stuff. The sellers would come up to you and physically grab you to get your attention. A firm "No" and stern face made them back off.

    After lunch we headed towards the War Remnant Museum which was thought provoking and also upsetting in parts due to the graphic photos and descriptions. After this we then headed towards the Plaza for a game of competitive bowling. We hired three lanes and had a great laugh. Mr Jack Clarke - we salute your excellence with a bowling ball! After this, we then had dinner!!!

    Dinner! Molly was our leader for the day and had already done an excellent job of organizing the hotel, the various activities and keeping us on track. Dinner was no disappointment and as we tuck in to either a two or three course meal at a traditional restaurant the conversation flowed about the trip and the memories we had all made.

    After dinner we headed back to the hotel, via a Battye tour of the city at night, which was a lovely way to end our trip. As we all awake this morning ready to catch our plane later from Ho Chi Minh Airport and last minute packing and present buying occurs we will all be reflecting on our time in Nam.

    We are all looking forward to heading home and seeing friends and family, but will miss Vietnam. Thank you all for your support, the song choices (to which we have sung a few... well only the first verse as we normally do not know more than that) and messages, which have kept us all going!

    So long Saigon, goodbye Vietnam, we're heading home and are England bound.

    Weeksey, signing off for the last time in Nam xx

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  2. Safe journey guys, look forward to seeing you all back in Midhurst (I'm getting into Gatwick on Tuesday afternoon, but my flight will have been a tiny bit shorter!). Thank you for the blog to all the students and especially to Jayne and Jen, it's been great to share some of the highs and lows.

    It might lack imagination but can I suggest Green Day and "Time of Your Life"?

    x

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  3. What a truly amazing experience and thank you too for sharing it with us as you travelled from north to south Vietnam, not many have done that, I'm sure more will but you have been the pioneers from MRC. Homeward Bound is my song choice, can't wait to give you a big hug Harry and hear about your trip for the months and weeks and years to come. xxxx

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  4. Roger NichollsAugust 07, 2011

    Well it's Goodbye Vietnam, quite an experience, and I'll sign off with just one song for you all this time around and it's David Bowie's "Heroes". Safe journey back.

    Love & Respect

    Roger Nicholls

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  5. Thanks for the blog, it has been wonderful to be able to know how you all were, what you were doing and the experiences you have had.Paddy can't wait to see you tomorrow at the airport tomorrow xxxx

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  6. Not sure if this link will work or not but I thought I'd make a spotify playlist with all the tracks suggested by blog readers over the last month. Have to admit that some of Roger's suggestions were beyond the scope of Spotify. Far far beyond! Anyway this is the link:

    http://open.spotify.com/user/janey419/playlist/6p6XepsyMugyALo55grEjE

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  7. Thanks Jane - love it when someone has done all the hard work
    xx

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  8. Roger NichollsAugust 09, 2011

    Hi Jane,

    Well done, that's a great idea. I suspect the tracks that you couldn't get are in my collection so perhaps I could make up a CD of the more obscure stuff!

    ReplyDelete