vagabonding

places to go, want to go, or just dreaming about

Vietnam is so cunning

The place knows I am wanting to come. I read an English language Vietnamese paper online. Ads and travel stories pique my morning considerations. I see Hanoi featured in many stories. Then a Vietnamese friend messages me just to make sure I am coming still. My good friend duyen asks how I have been. That she can’t wait to cook for me. The boys are anxious to see Mike. So cunning and smart is Vietnam. It pleads with me to post some photo. oh. I have one. Or thousands. The same with memories and experiences. So here is one. Just...

Vietnam!

So I am very excited and thrilled and happy and somewhat relieved to have received my e-visa for 30 days in Vietnam. I leave on 27 December 2022 and come back 25 January 2023. I booked all the flights as well. I leave from Siem Reap in the evening and get to Saigon later in the evening. Have 3 days to play in Saigon and then fly up to Hanoi for a few weeks. Then back to Saigon and back to Siem Reap the same day. It means I get a few days to enjoy the Tet holidays before returning...

Vietnam and the Visa

I am hopefully getting my electronic visa (evisa) today or tomorrow so I can then buy my airline tickets for the whole thing. I already found the flights or something close I want and I can buy them either individually or using the multi trip thing. The visa require some temporary address in Vietnam so I listed the hotel in Saigon but the majority of time will be spent in Hanoi. I think three days in Saigon would just about do it for me. If my friend Tom lived in Hanoi, I would not stop in Saigon at all. I’m...

Little things in the small morning

For whatever reason, perhaps some vestige of earlier days, I woke up desiring to get two things done. First off was to file for my Vietnam e-visa online here. That requires some address in Vietnam so I booked a hotel room in Saigon on booking.com for three nights. I’m staying down in District One. I needed the temporary address for the Visa and I wanted to be sure I get the visa before I do the more expensive thing which is booking the airline tickets. Since they state it takes three days now to secure the evisa I should have...

Thought I would not post again but…

I was out today when my dear friend Lily in Vietnam messaged me. It has been I think over a year since seeing her and I have not been back to Vietnam since July 2021. It is rather amazing I guess that the year that went by in Mexico and now the months back in Southeast Asia have gone by. At first after leaving Vietnam, things just seemed rather pointless or I felt this lack. Sometimes sadness or despair could strike but I also had Mexico and I managed to stay in a few wonderful places. Vietnam still was there...

Part of the Joy of Living this way

It seems a friend will be making his way to Cambodia to live awhile early November. He wants to kind of travel around the kingdom for awhile to find a place he would like to live. The original plan was to go to Siem Reap this Saturday, find a place to live long term, and then leave again in December for Vietnam for a month. Now things have changed and I don’t think I will get an apartment since I will not be in one place for too long through the end of the year. I wrote down an idea....

Sad Tales from old expats

Tonight I went to have dinner at one of the local Khmer places which happens to be open on the holidays. The food there is always good and I really like their fresh fruit shakes. I had chicken fried rice and a mixed fruit shake. Excellent! And reasonable in price for all the food. While there I talked with this German expat sitting out front who helps the owner with customers. We chatted a bit and then this American expat showed up. He did not look so good. Almost looked beat up which I could not imagine here because in...

thankful and grateful

Sitting here at Starbucks. On Saturday. Wow. Not Sunday. But this coffee shop is 5 minutes for me from my Airbnb. From the time picking up my passport with the new visa extension which lets me just live here, have similar benefits in many cases as Khmer people, and enjoy a cost of living which probably lets me do as I please with food and drink, I’ve felt this sense of peace. Cambodia this time was a little bit of a wait. I tried to do this in March this year but the visa landscape changed at the last minute...

casual wandering

Today I took time to enjoy some coffee, getting my Kindle Paperwhite going on my new book, and then walked over to Central Market. The market is the major local market of Phnom Penh. They have just about everything. Not comparable to markets anywhere else. This market sets the baseline to me of what a local market is in Asia. From flowers to suits to hair salons. Wet and dry market items. To wander the market is to be assailed with all the flavors of Asia. Spices and senses and the almost over the top sensation of it all. This...

visa extension joys

One of the major things was extending my 30 day ordinary visa to the retirement extension which gives me a year. I can enter and leave as I want. Take off for Vietnam or Malaysia. And run around Cambodia. There are places here to go as well. Like Kampot and Battambang. Cambodia is rich with culture and history. Traveling around the country is mostly done by bus. Most buses will go from Phnom Penh to any of the other places. Maybe the best way to organize bus service is Giant Ibis. The best way to plan a more complex trip...