Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Vietnam: Second week (My birthday party & District 1 at night)

Hello everyone, and thanks for passing by again! My stay in Vietnam is going great, as you can tell by my last post and my infinite posts on Facebook/IG/Twitter :B So yesterday (as you guys know) it was my 22nd birthday, and my Vietnamese family organized this beautiful birthday party for me! But before that (which was late at night) let's start from the very beginning of the day... :B

It all started like a regular day: Woke up at 6am (that's how we do it here, yes!), have breakfast with the fam, have a shower... After lunch Peter and I went to our room (as always) and we stayed there chillin and hanging out. Peter told me not to come down because the family was opening durians (a huge and SUPER STINKY fruit that I totally hate... Actually it's illegal in some hotels in Southeast Asia for how much it smells!). And since Peter knows that my nose is pretty sensitive, it worked like an alibi for me to stay inside :B

An hour later I saw that Sy Anh (Peter's 10 year-old cousin, who terribly reminds me of my cousin Alex, since they have the same age and like similar stuff) uploaded a picture of the house decorated with pink balloons... Sy Anh got an iPad very recently, so all he does recently is uploading all kinds of pictures on Facebook: From the floor tiles to the lunch's leftovers, lol! I was pretty confused so I asked Peter why the fmaily was decorating the house like that... When he saw the picture his face went :\ "W** is wrong with this kid!" he said with a mad voice... Yeah, it seems Sy Anh had ruined the surprise, haha!

Around 6pm Peter told me to finally go downstairs, and it's when I found the kids of the family singing Happy Birthday to me and welcoming me with sparklers! And well, I had to pretend it was a big surprise but it was actually a big surprise, since I didn't expect all this at all! Lots of people (Even neighbors and Peter's second cousins that he had never met! XD), lots of food, cake (I GOT THREE, THREE CAKES!)... But everyone was so kind to me ><!!!



Hola gente, gracias por pasaros por mi blog otra vez! ^-^ Mi estancia en Vietnam está yendo de fábula, por lo que podéis ver en mi último post y los infinitos post en Facebook/IG/Twitter :B Ayer (como sabéis) fue mi 22o cumpleaños, y mi familia vietnamita organizó ésta pedazo de fiesta para mí! Pero antes de eso (que fue por la noche ya) vamos a empezar por cómo empezó mi día... :B

Mi 7 de Julio empezó como un día normal para nosotros: Levantarse a las 6, desayunar, ducharse, estar con la familia... Después de comer Peter y yo hemos subimos a la habitación y nos quedamos allí. Sobre las 4 Peter me dijo que no bajara abajo, porqué su familia estaba abriendo durians (una fruta enorme, del tamaño de una pelota de rugby que hace una peste espantosa... De hecho en muchos hoteles no la permitan por la peste que hace!). Y como sabe que a mi los olores fuertes me tocan, pues le hizo caso :B

Una hora después veo que Sy Anh (el primo de Peter de 10 años, el que es la versión vietnamita del Alex), que desde que le han regalado el iPad hace fotos de todo... Desde los azulejos del suelo hasta de las sobras del almuerzo, pone en FB una foto de la casa con un montón de globos rosas... Se lo enseño a Peter y dice "Me caguen el niño este..." Total, que el nene me ha fastidiado la sorpresa haha! 

Al final cuando bajo ya (sobre las 6) me encuentro los pequeños de la familia cantándome feliz cumpleaños y dándome la bienvenida con bengalas! Y yo bueno, disimulando un poco pero también flipándolo en colores porqué vaya fiestorro! Con montones de comida, pastel (TRES, TRES pasteles que he recibido!), regalos y gente que ni siquiera conocía (Primos segundos de Peter, incluso vecinos!), pero todos fueron muy amables conmigo 


VÂN ANH / Stephanie and her mother with sparklers
VÂN ANH / Stephanie y su mamá con bengalas

All that food!
Toda ésa comida!

Me being overwhelmed by presents ...! @_@
Estresada con tanto regalo ...! @_@


Mi monkey-shaped birthday cake, hehe! The monkey is my Chinese horoscope's animal, and just like in China, Japan and Korea in Vietnam they believe more in the Chinese horoscope than in the "Western" one. But I love being monkey! ^-^

Mi pastel de cumpleaños en forma de mono, hehe! El mono es el animal de mi horóscopo chino, y como en China, Japón y Corea en Vietnam se cree más en el horóscopo chino que en el "Occidental". Pero me encanta ser un monito! ^-^


Me giving a little "Thank You" speech, and VÂN ANH / Stephanie (Peter's 14 year-old cousin) translating to Vietnamese for me
Un mini discursillo dando las gracias, y VÂN ANH / Stephanie (La prima de Peter de 14 años) traduciendo al vietnamita


Me posing with the 3 most hard-working women in this family! From left to right, Peter's aunt (married to Peter's brother), me, Peter's aunt (his mother's sister) and his grandmother. Great cookers and great party organizers!

 Posando on las tres mujeres más currantas de ésta familia! De izquierda a derecha, la tía de Peter (cuñada de la madre de Peter), servidora, la otra tía de Peter (hermana de su madre) y la abuela. Cocineras y organizadoras de fiestas fenomenales!


The youngest of the family, enjoying the meal
Los más jóvenes de la familia, disfrutando de la comida

All that food... Ugh! We'll have leftovers until next year!
Toda ésa comida... Ugh! Tendremos sobras hasta para el año que viene!

Mi beautiful VÂN ANH / Stephanie! I love this girl so much already, she's the sweetest thing!
Mi VÂN ANH / Stephanie bonita! Me encanta ésta chica, es lo más dulce que hay!

With my Petey Boo 
Con mi Pedrito 


Now ugly selfie time :B
Ahora selfies feas :B

The pink balloons I saw on Facebook... Haha
Los globos rosas que vi en Facebook... Haha

Photo with Peter's youngest second cousins
Foto con los primos segundos más jóvenes de Peter

Picture with Peter's youngest second cousins. Two of the girls were Mai and Thuy (two little heads in the back, haha) who are studying college in Connecticut and Boston... Wow! They spoke perfect English and finally we got the chance to talk and meet natives around our age! After some chit chatting during the evening they asked us if we felt like going for a walk around District 1 after the party, just to see the night view of Saigon... And we obviously said yes! ;)

Foto con los primos segundos más jóvenes de Peter. Dos de las chicas eran Mai y Thuy (dos cabecillas de las que no se ven) que están en la universidad en Connecticut y Boston... Wow! Hablaban un inglés perfecto y por suerte hemos podido hablar con ellas y finalmente conocer a nativos de nuestra edad! Después de charlar durante la noche nos preguntaron si nos apetecía dar un paseo por el Distrito 1 después de la fiesta, y así ver la vista nocturna de Saigon... Y nosotros dijimos que sí! 




We took a cab and we started our route in Notre Dame, the Saigonese version of the famous cathedral in Paris. Ironically, this one is bigger than the original one LOL! I tried to take pictures of it but the night light was not on my side...

Once we entered District 1 (the city center) we realized that wasn't the Ho Chi Minh City we were used to... That was completely different to the District 4 where we live: Bvlgari, Chanel, Hotel Sheraton over here, Ritz over there... We saw several touristic places in the city that I'm just gonna mention, since I'm gonna visit them in the day very soon. Hope you like the night shots :)



 Tomamos un taxi y empezamos nuestra ruta en Notre Dame, la version saigonesa de la famosa catedral de Paris. Irónicamente ésta es más grande que la original! Intenté tomar fotos de la iglesia, pero la luz nocturna no jugaba a mi favor ésa noche...

Una vez adentrados en el Distrito 1 (el centro de la ciudad) nos dimos cuenta que eso no era la ciudad de Ho Chi Minh a la que estábamos acostumbrados... Aquello era completamente diferente al Distrito 4 donde vivimos: Bvlgari, Chanel, Hotel Sheraton por allí, Ritz por allá... Vimos varios lugares turísticos de la ciudad que sólo voy a mencionar, pues voy a volver a visitarlos de día muy pronto. Espero que os gusten las fotos nocturnas! :)



A beautiful vintage café we found on the way to Ben Thanh Market
Una cafetería estilo vintage que encontramos de camino al mercado de Ben Thanh

Vincom Center, one of the fanciest malls in the city
Vincom Center, uno de los centros comerciales más caros de la ciudad


Saigon Opera House
La Ópera de Saigón

Statue of Ho Chi Minh with Saigon's City Hall in the back
Estátua de Ho Chi Minh con el ayuntamiento de la ciudad detrás


You see how this doesn't look like Vietnam anymore?!
Verdad que no parece Vietnam?!



Ben Thanh Night Market: Basically a market where tourists can go buy souvenirs! Just that, haha
El mercado nocturno de Ben Thanh: Básicamente un mercado donde los turistas pueden encontrar recuerdos para llevarse a casa! Sólo eso... Haha




We had so much fun walking around District 1 at night! Mai and Thuy did us a big favor showing us around, it was so nice from them! We have plans to see each other again, so we won't lose contact with them. I had a wonderful day overall, a day I didn't expect at all! I hope someday I'm fluent enough at Vietnamese to tell my family hoe happy I am for all they did for me :) But Peter & I still have a lot of adventures to live here in Vietnam! So keep an eye on my blog, alright? ;)

Nos lo pasamos genial dando una vuelta por el Distrito 1 de noche! Mai y Thuy nos hicieron un gran favor enseñándonos la ciudad de noche, la verdad fue todo un detalle! Tenemos planes de volver a vernos pronto, así que no perderemos el contacto con ellas. En general pasé un día perfecto, un día que no me esperaba ni muchísimo menos! Espero algún día poder hablar vietnamita suficientemente fluido para demostrar a mi familia lo agradecida que estoy por todo lo que hicieron por mí :) Pero a Peter y a mí aún nos quedan muchas aventuras por vivir aquí en Vietnam! Así que estad atentos al blog! ;)


CL

5 comments:

  1. Nada más que con la tarta yo ay lo hubiera flipado. (Cesar)

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    1. Les costó sus 60 euracos, me han confesado! :O Te lo juro, esa cosa era enorme!

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  2. AHH. I missed your birthday, Happy belated birthday love! :) That really looks like a huge proper birthday party! Glad to know you're enjoying your stay in Vietnam!! <3

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  3. I have just started to follow your blog and must admit it is quite addictive :) I haven't been to Vietnam myself but have a huge interest in Southeast Asia in general (Indochina to be specific). I can picture the huge income gap in Vietnam looking at your photos. What is your sociological observation about Vietnam? I would love to hear it from someone who visited there :)

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  4. Dear Claudia,

    Thanks for dropping my blog and leaving me a nice comment :) I forgot to add a follow button but now have one like yours (I suppose). I understand what you mean! It is always hard to say something about a country unless you live there for a while. I am sure you do enjoy your stay in Vietnam given the fact that your boyfriend is there. I would also like to my fiancé's country one day and enjoy my stay there, too ^_^ I also saw that you were in South Korea. My fiancé is Korean himself. May I learn your first impression about Korea? :)

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