On Wednesday 7th July it was clear that the number of Corona cases in Saigon were not letting up and there were some issues in trying to keep it under control so an announcement was made that Ho Chi Minh City would go in to Directive 16 lockdown from midnight, more info here:
https://e.vnexpress.net/news/news/covid-19-sources-spread-all-over-hcmc-says-health-department-4305117.html
A lot of our friends in Saigon were feeling the stress of it a bit more now and some were F1 or F2 and having to isolate.
There was a morning shopping trip at 8.30am which both Captain Caveman and I decided to join Veronika and Stu on. Our first stop was the pharmacy where I bought cream for my eczema, paracetamol, contraceptive pills and some Decolgen for Captain Caveman. In all pharmacies now you have to give your name, address and phone number if you are buying any medication which could be for Corona so I had to do that and I didn’t have enough money as the face cream was so expensive that Captain Caveman had to come and bring me more cash in the now heavy rain.
We also shopped at the organic shop and the VinMart before going for a fancy lunch.

We got quite a few things but we’re still meant to be on a strict budget so we were trying to be as careful as possible. Captain Caveman had been paid but after all the outgoings there wasn’t much left. Here’s the shopping we bought, for all you list lovers, prices in Dong;

Pharmacy
Decolgen (16 tablets) 19,200
Panadol (24 tablets) 22,000
Marvelon (63 tablets) 195,000
Eucerin cream (1 tube) 434,700

Total spent 670,900 (£20.80)

Booze Shop
2 bottles of Bombay Sapphire gin 460,000

Total spent (£14.26)

Organic Shop
1 red cabbage 13,330
4 carrots 20,670
2 red peppers 47,530
1 pack of vegetable stock granules 75,000
4 potatoes 75,600
1 pomelo 157,500

Total spent 389,630 (£12.08)

VinMart Supermarket
Tissues 8,500
1 baguette 9,500
1 packet of Fox’s glacier mints 15,100
6 bananas 23,880
Mushrooms 35,500
1 bag of frozen sweetcorn 41,000
10 eggs 43,900
3 180ml cartons of almond milk 69,500
1kg of chicken 88,900
1 jar of jam 138,000

Total spent 473,780 (£14.69)

The bargain of the day was the gin being only £7 per bottle which Captain Caveman was thrilled with it being cheaper for 2 bottles than my small face cream. The items we probably could have left off the list was the pomelo (which was huge) and the jam, but we got a nice free tote bag with it this time and that would come in handy for me to use in Turkey.
We still didn’t buy any wine which is usually around 400,000vnd for 1 bottle and at least it was keeping me healthier! Once I got to Turkey I would drink a lot more wine as a cheap (but good) bottle there is about a third of the cost of that in Vietnam. The 2 items I would love to be able to buy are popcorn kernels and mince beef but nowhere has any in stock.

What would you have left out or added this week?

Bich had chosen the Vinpearl hotel for lunch, we were the only guests and the staff had to put the lights on as we sat at a huge table with a lazy susan! Captain Caveman and Stu ordered Caesar salads, Bich ordered prawns, Veronika chicken breast and I went completely off the diet and ordered the chicken burger (I’d taken stomach medicine in case of any issues). My food was absolutely fantastic, it came with French fries, cheese, bacon and gherkins and was only 180,000vnd (£5.58). Everyone else said their food was nice too and we had a good laugh before heading back to Phong Nha.

Captain Caveman and I had BBQ ‘pulled pork’ jackfruit on a baguette with shredded cabbage, carrot and gherkins for an early dinner. It was nice, if not a bit unusual, but it definitely wouldn’t fool a meat lover. I would have it again though, which was a good job as we now had BBQ jackfruit left, which we popped in the fridge for tomorrow’s lunch. I’d organised another Ladies Night for tomorrow but was having a few problems getting people to commit to whether they were coming or not.

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