Ho Chi Minh City - walkabout

Trip Start Jan 23, 2013
Trip End Jul 23, 2013

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Flag of Vietnam  , Ho Chi Minh City,
Monday, February 25, 2013

We woke late and didn't get down to breakfast until 09:00. Most of the food had gone and the staff did not look as though they were going to stock it up again. I asked for some bread and a miserable looking girl reluctantly picked up a sIiced white loaf and put it out. Terry asked if breakfast was finished as we thought it was available until 09:30, the girl replied 'No, not finish' but made no attempt to get any more fruit, eggs etc - shambles.

We walked over the road and ordered our bus tickets to Cambodia. We had done some research and wanted to travel on the Mekong Express but sadly, this was fully booked. As we really did not want to stay any longer in Vietnam, we settled for another company and crossed our fingers that it would be OK. Terry also managed to buy some $'s here, but unfortunately he was given it in $10 and $20 bills, when we wanted smaller denominations. We had been told that in Cambodia, they only accept payment for food etc in $'s, but will give change in their own currency. This means that all the change that is given, is worthless, unless we could change it at the Bank.

As we didn't really have any plans and were tired from the long day the day before, I suggested walking slowly to the River front. It was a long walk in the heat of midday, but totally worth it. As well as seeing a lot of charter boats, we saw huge boats being loaded with cargo and a cruise liner as well. We stopped on a bench and had a drink, trying to work out what the small fish that were swimming in the shallows were.

Walking back toward the Hotel, we went in several banks to try to split our $ notes down. We were treated with absolute disdain, even though we only tried to break a $20. Two banks said they 'didn't have enough money' - really? In the end we did manage to get $40 changed at the Vietcombank, by telling the girl behind the desk that we needed it to tip the staff at our Hotel. Even though this would mean the $'s would remain in Vietnam, you could tell they didn't really want to do it.

On the way back we stopped at a Cafe for a couple of cold green teas; they were very refreshing and the coolness of the ice managed to calm Terry's fury over the $'s situation.

We returned to the Hotel to freshen up and publish the previous days blog. I also started to look at accommodation in Phnom Penh and managed to book what promised to be a nice Hotel.

In the evening we walked further into District 1 and decided to return to Babba's Indian Restaurant. We had a few different dishes this time, but again the service and food were faultless. If it was your first visit, you were offered 5% off of your meal as well as a free rice pudding desert if you fill in a feedback form. It was our lucky evening, we were not recognised as returning customers, so were given the feedback form and the rice pudding. To further keep our identities a secret, this time, we didn't put our correct details on the feedback forms (see photo).
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Catherine on

Wow, your doing so much its hard to keep up! Glad your having a good time tho and keep the blogs coming as its lovely to read before bed! Love you lots!!x

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