Greetings from Thailand

I think I’ve spread my legs for more men in the passed few weeks  than I have my whole life. But catching GrabBikes to get to wherever I need to be is just so convenient and cheap! For example, going to the aiport today, I managed to only spend 150 000 VND (R85) for a ride which was like heaven considering the airport is about an hour from my home.

So here I am sitting in my hotel in Bangkok, Thailand, enjoying a big ol’ pizza for one and watching trashy TV about doctors doing the usual things that doctors do. After arriving at the Noi Bai International Airport, I checked in and proceded straight to my boarding gate. The reason I flew all the way out to Thailand was so that I could get my business visa upon arrival in Hanoi when I return. Having a business visa means that I can now get my work permit, which reduces the tax on my salary by almost 50%. Because this isn’t a ‘real vacation’, I’ll only be spending one night in the city of Bangkok. I probably won’t do much site-seeing, but I don’t mind for now. It just means I’ll have to come back here eventually (I’m not complaining).

Thailand, from what I’ve seen, is breathtaking. I find the people to be helpful and friendly, and the sky a lot clearer than in Hanoi (which is a permanent shade of brown). Landing at Suvarnabhumi, I passed through customs quickly and caught a cab to my hotel. I’m spending the night at the Vismaya Hotel, a modern and gorgeous little place just 5 minutes from the airport. Tall windows make up most of the walls of the main foyer, which has a bar and restaurant. The foyer leads to a sparkling blue pool, with loungers both inside and outside of the water. I attempted to catch a bit of a tan this afternoon, but because I slept on the plane I was feeling quite awake so I got bored really quickly. I retreated back to my room for food (my ultimate happy place). My room is very fancy, with a big, clean bed, cable TV, a 5 star bathroom, and an AC (mecessary to combat the 38 degree weather). It feels nice to just relax in my own space after the busy few days I’ve had.

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I spent Friday going off on a photography excursion, taking street portraits of some of the Vietnamese citizens near my apartment. It was definitely a fun way to get to talking with the locals, although the language barrier proved to be frustrating. I even sat down with a group of old ladies for some green tea and pineapples. I have to say, for anyone suffering from self-esteem issues, you should consider moving to Vietnam. The amount of times I’ve been told how beautiful I am, by complete strangers, is ridiculous. It obviously has something to do with my fair complexion, which the Vietnamese consider to be a sign of beauty and class, but at the same time it’s kind of nice. I don’t know? I like it. It makes me feel better about eating this whole pizza by myself.

So back to Friday, after making friends with all the yiayias and grannies, I returned home to shower and rest before my evening class. Both Saturday and Sunday afternoon I taught from 14:00 until 21:00. I’m beginning to absolutely fall in love with my kids. I’m learning each of their individual personality traits and interests, and hearing them yelling “Hello Teacher Dan-ye-la” as they run into class makes my heart so happy.

All in all it has been a wild ride so far – and probably getting wilder. Stay tuned!

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