I’m in my third week and Vietnam is now starting to feel comfortable. I no longer get antsy when people take awhile to look at my information (whether it be credit cards, taxi cards, scraps of paper with addresses written on them) and I no longer get angry if people push me aside or climb over me. It’s just the flow of this place. Everything in all directions and so I just do what I want. It’s a little unnerving at first to just do whatever you want. Of course, I still try not to mow people over, but I think this habit will be difficult to get rid of when I return home. I may have to learn to keep in step with the US again. On the other hand, I’m looking forward to riding a bike without having to wear a face mask or feeling like I’m going to pass out from the heat. Still, even at three weeks in, there are things that have gotten under my skin. Made a home. Buried themselves in my heart and I’ll truly miss that about Vietnam.

San Francisco has some amazing food, but so does Vietnam. This place feels like its on the cusp of a food revolution. Is that too bold of a statement? I feel like Vietnam is just beginning to blossom and it’s pretty neat to see the country evolve from the inside out. Even in my short time here I can see little changes. Whether they are good or bad, I don’t know yet. I do know that I have yet to have a bad meal here. Different…sometimes hard to swallow because of the flavors, but it was never bad.

Laughter is different here. I hear the girls laugh and it sounds like “keh-keh” I like it. It makes me smile.

I hope there is some kind of ancient proverb about sleeping on a hard bed. Something that bestows enlightenment on me or at least earns me some points in the afterlife. Hard beds are hard to sleep on and this is one thing I won’t miss.

Lunch time is when I sit downstairs and listen to my co-workers talk in Vietnamese. I never know what they’re saying, but I like listening to the tones. The language is sort of melodic and soft. Can words be soft? They laugh, I smile. The lunch time ritual has become comforting, much like my morning coffee.

I’ve been “going-going-going” almost non stop and now I feel like it’s time to decompress. This week will be a good week to go home early and maybe make dinner at home and watch my programs.