Hanoi, Vietnam

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Hanoi, one of the bigger cities in Vietnams and the more well-known ones apart from Dien Phien Phu and Saigon (aka HCMC – Ho Chi Minh City). It was too noisy for my liking. It was a little bit more dirty than what I was used to. It was hot, humid and frankly, sticky! *ugh*

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BUT I loved it.

….I must be nuts to love a country that implements honking as ‘safe driving’, hiding under the driver’s poncho when it’s raining, holding an umbrella while you’re on a motorbike, and no helmets. It is not that I love…but more.

The people are always smiling and ever so friendly with huge amounts of waves to spare for complete strangers. The scenery is so unspoilt, untouched, and wild. It is nice to see a little slice of European weather in the heart of South-East Asia.

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My travels took me from Hanoi to Lao Cai (by train) and then on to Sapa – the gateway to the North. From Sapa, the city that never seems to run out of rain and mist, I head onto Dien Phien Phu by motorbike (as you can see from above) BUT because of a little accident, we never reached our original destination. We stopped at a little town called Lai Chau and from there, headed back to Sapa through the same way we came.

I never did much shopping. I ate a lot of Vietnamese food. I stayed in weird places. I was a zoo-exhibit at a local Viet village. And I got into a whole lot of cross-cultural incidents…

I had fun – even though Nil thinks otherwise (coz of my accident). But I mean if you saw what I saw, you would too.

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For more pictures, feel free to click here and be sure to go through the descriptions instead of concentrating just on the titles. There is so much for me to tell you. :p

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What it is like…

…coming to work super early…

Or at least, early to me.

Here I am at the office during the hour when, at my previous workplace, most people would be at home, preparing to leave or even be on their journey to work. The only person I knew then who would be at the office was Sham or several of my other colleagues from the American Degree Program). Half of the staffroom would start walking in only after 8:15am.

Yet here, as I was driving to work, listening to Light & Easy‘s Caroline and Richard, I begin to really enjoy the idea of the fresh morning air (the haze has made it quite a rarity actually) and the thoughts of the birds chirping as I type away on my PC.

No stuffy aircon at the office, no truckloads of exhaust, no busy city noise…

Just the crickets, birds and cool silence of the morning at Cyberjaya.

When you’re are city girl like me, you’ll settle for anything that reminds you of the thing that you love best – the quiet cool mornings – like the ones I had regularly when I was still a student in Sydney – when the birds are singing as if their songs were tokens of worship to the new dawn…when the air was fresh and crispy…when all you could do was just drown in it and willingly too.

Everyone should go to work early – at least once in their lifetime (but then again, if your office is IN the middle of the city, the experience could very well be completely different.

*giggles*

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Apologies upfront

It would appear that my new job has me too tired out to blog at night – not to mention the fact too busy (and enchanted) to blog during working hours too. The training sessions have been keeping me away from this blog and ultimately, the Internet. And it will continue to do so until early September.

I’m in the midst of learning XML, Epic Editor and Sigmalink in order for me to sub-edit in my job. So far, today’s training session went well – I was happy to ace it (with positive feedback given to my team leader – who just informed me that she’s counting on me AFTER the training is over) yet apprehensive since I didn’t want to see like everyone else sucked at what they were doing. Must be the Asian mentality in me – “do not outshine other people lest they look at you strangely”.

Anyway, having done all that…I guess I’m tired out yet exhilirated to know that I don’t have to bring work back home (for now) – even the emails! New opportunities, new chances, new things to learn – it’s very overwhelming.

Yet…

It is quite bad…simply because whatever I observe and desire to blog about just flitters away into thin air. I’d blame it on the travelling to and fro from work as well as the lack of time I have to spent on the Net. I still have French homework to work on – have yet to start on that one. Can’t afford the late nights anymore simply because I have to get up early to prepare breakfast AND lunch (yes, I bring lunch to work) – not to mention do my housechores (laundry mostly), spend whatever little time I have chatting with Nil AND preparing for the next workday.

So yeah… apologies upfront for the lack of updates and interesting musings.

Oh…did I mention that my new office is freezing cold??? I think I’ll bring a windbreaker to work tomorrow. *brrr* Funny how everyone looks like they are in a four season country when they’re in the office.

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Tired out.

I got up at 6am and left at around 7am this morning…and arrived at work around 8:45am. This country never ceases to fail me despite my best efforts to think the very best of it.

The bus that was supposed to come never came and I had to wait half an hour for another bus – I was lucky though. I didn’t have to pay RM10 for a cab to make it on time to work. Otherwise, I should have been in the office about half an hour earlier.

I left the office at 5:40pm…and arrived home at 7:15pm. It took me nearly twenty minutes to walk to the place where the bus goes (simply because someone was stupid enough to think that the bus ought to do a loop and not go back to where it dropped you off to pick you back up again). It was late too. ~_~

Sorry but I’m really tired and tomorrow will be another long day. Gack.

Oh…I met with an accident in Hanoi but Nil and I are good. Just lacerations and a couple of biggish scabs. More about it another day, ‘k?

Bleh…I have this horrible stomachache which makes me want to puke. *goes green*

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Away.


Courtesy of Getty Images

Well folks, I thought I’d put up a notice of some sort.

I’ll be away from today onwards till 15th August – going to Hanoi this Saturday and well, I doubt I’ll have anything to update before that (in Singapore now). Have a good weekend/week ahead and come visit again after the 15th August for pictures and recap of the holiday.

^_^

BAI BAI!

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Just before the trip…

I’m all set for my trip to Hanoi with the boyfriend with a stop-over in Singapore. Everything has been packed in whilst ensuring that I don’t go overboard. You know that age old saying about how women pack their entire homes into a suitcase? It’s true…for some at least.

Nil understands – just as how he tolerates my PMS mood swings (which I get plagued with prior to a period), just as how he is open-minded enough to accept that I come from a very different culture and well, different family. He has his own faults which I lovingly accept to a certain degree. It is not a picture perfect relationship and it should never be in the first place. It is hardly easy to maintain either but at least we are both trying. The one thing I know we have going for us is that we love each other.

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Malaysian Idols?

I never was quite an Idol follower – at least after I returned from Australia anyway. I was there throughout Guy Sebastian’s journey to become the first Australian Idol (there were two other serious contenders for the title towards the last leg of the race – one of them pulled out due to a vocal/throat problem – I suspect she would have won if she’d carried on) and the show was a great watch. There were remarkable voices and talent displayed on stage and there were hardly any complaints about the entire show. You could say that each singer in the final 12/11 was a favourite and the reasons were good.

Last Friday’s episode and the follow-up results show reminded me about something; about why I stopped watching Malaysian Idol altogether. I was stumped at first and then I just shrugged it off to one of those crazy Malaysian things. The show, the sound, the voting system…all of it is just…crazy.

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