The Postcard Project: Saigon

Saigon

Just when I started to lose faith in the Philippine Postal System, this came in the mail.

It has been a while since I came to visit Saigon (now Ho Chi Minh) but I remember it vividly. Side walk cafes, delicious ban mih (French baguette filled with cold cuts and veggies), and French colonnial architecture are in almost every corner. Chill is what I would describe its sidewalks.

The streets, however… Yes, the streets… they’re an entirely different story.

I’ve always hated the fact that Cebu isn’t pedestrian friendly. Street lights aren’t programmed to let you cross completely. I thought Cebu had it worst. But then I came to visit Vietnam.

The raucous in the streets is beyond compare. It usually takes us a good 20 minutes to cross. Even walking on the side walk doesn’t guarantee you safety. Motorcycles are everywhere and street lights are often ignored.

The thing about Vietnam is that there is always something interesting to see. It doesn’t take much to see them. Every place that’s worth going requires you to cross the street.

On the other side of the road from Gustave Eiffel’s Notre Dame Cathedral is the Saigon Central Post Office where I sent this postcard from.

“The world is for the brave,” my postcard reads. The retired postman who is just as famous as post office itself carefully and efforfully wrote that.

Now more than ever, those words couldn’t be more true.

Brave the busy streets of life. Borrowing the favorite word of Elizabeth Gilbert, “attravesiarmo”. Let’s cross over.

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